Chaos Erupt After Residents Protest Over Poor Road Despite Govt Promises

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Police officers resorted to using tear gas on Sunday, May 5, to disperse protesting residents along the Kapsabet-Shamakhokho road. 

The residents had blocked a section of the road for over five hours disrupting traffic and forcing the officers to take action.

According to the locals, their actions were driven by the lack of progress in resolving the road’s issues despite numerous promises from government officials. 

Residents accused President William Ruto of failing to honour his promises to get the road fixed during his numerous trips to the area.

A collage of a muddy road (left) and a police officer throwing a teargas canister (right) on May 5, 2024

Citizen Digital

“The president was here and told the road would be tarmacked. He told us wametenga, wamepanga (they have set aside and planned) but we are yet to see the results,” a resident remarked.

In addition, the frustrated residents highlighted that the heavy rains had further hindered transportation challenges, preventing them from conducting their daily activities. They noted that alternative routes were also impassable, exacerbating the situation.

Furthermore, they expressed concern that several locals had sustained injuries while using the route, particularly those on motorcycles.

The residents demanded immediate action from the relevant authorities to address the situation, warning that the protests would persist until the road was tarred.

“Boda riders have a hard time using this road and often lose control injuring the passenger.”

“A while ago there was a woman who delivered a baby on the road after vehicles failed to pass,” one of the residents complained.

In the past months, several Kenyans have complained of poorly maintained roads which have hindered transport and also destroyed cars. Efforts to get the relevant authorities’ attention have been futile in most cases.

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen in December 2023 pointed fingers at Members of Parliament for the bad state of the roads. The CS accused the MPs of misappropriating funds meant to maintain roads.

In March, he proposed the increase of the Road Maintenance Levy from Ksh18 to Ksh22 per litre of diesel and petrol by 2025.

He explained that the funds will be channelled towards maintaining and upgrading roads countrywide.

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen at his office.

Photo

Kipchumba Murkomen



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