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Stretch of road near DP Ruto’s residence a nightmare for traders, motorists

By Pkemoi Ng'enoh | June 12th 2021

It is a road that serves the high and mighty in politics and the corporate world in the city. Most Karen residents use Ngong Road on a daily basis. But a small stretch on the road, which has been under construction for quite a while, is giving motorists and nearby traders sleepless nights. 

The less-than-one-kilometre section is dusty in sunny weather and muddy when it rains. A number of traders told The Nairobian the contractor has taken longer than expected on the short stretch after Ngong Bypass and Karen Road, just before the official residence of Deputy President William Ruto.

Mid-morning on a sunny Thursday, we found only one grader just before Shell Petrol Station parked on the roadside, with no one around except for a few men wearing orange reflectors sitting under a shade at a distance. 

“I’ve been here for more than a year now and nothing much has changed on the stretch. Sometimes we see some men fixing patches on the road, then they disappear for weeks. We have lost customers because accessing our shades is a bit tricky for some motorists,” Peter Mwaura, a seedlings seller, said.

Apart from the flower and seedling dealers on the stretch claiming dust from the road construction has choked their businesses, there are hotels, filling stations and other small traders on the area. 

“The contractor has not been fast, resulting in us losing business because of dust and blocked entrances; many people have suffered because if this short stretch,” said Albert Mwangi, who runs an eatery in the area. 
He added: “In fact, some people have since left, promising to come back once construction is completed.”
However, just after the bend that leads to DP’s official residence as you head towards Karen Shopping Centre, we found some men busy working on the drainage. Unlike the other side, traders don’t operate around there. 
“The section is bumpy for motorists who visit our offices and must use Ngong Road. The stretch has taken long to fix; many prefer this route to the Bomas of Kenya one because of traffic jam,” said a staff based at DP’s Karen home. 
A Kenya Urban Roads Authority engineer told The Nairobian that the section is part of projects that start at Dagoretti Corner to a section of Langata Road and around DP’s residence.

“The contractor is on site as we speak. The section has cotton soil that forced us to dig up to 10 feet deep.... The other part past the area is almost complete,” he said.

He added: “I’m sure DP is aware. The president is frequently briefed about the progress. The job was supposed to be completed last week but the contractor is still within the timelines.”

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