Utange residents rush to demolish roadside structures ahead of Friday deadline

A some of the structures earmarked for demolition along the road PHOTO JANET MURIKIRA

A section Building owners along a section of Old Malindi road have started demolishing roadside structures more than six months since the structures were earmarked for demolition.

According to a directive given by the Kenya Urban Roads Authority,  road structures that have encroached on the largely dilapidated road would be demolished on the 28th of August.

A spot check by Baraka FM shows owners had demolished structures in Bamburi, Mwisho, Palestina, and Utange areas.

The demolition is to pave way for the completion of rehabilitation works that have stalled for more than three years.

Rehabilitation works on the road that stretches from the Jocham Hospital to Shanzu were expected to have been complete by September 2019.

However, more than eight months after the lapse of the expected completion date, area residents have to choose between wading in muddy water or being tossed to and fro whenever they are being driven along the largely potholed road.

Engineers working along the road have blamed payment delays from the authority and encroachment of the road reserve as some of the reasons that caused the rehabilitation works that began in 2016 to stall.

This is according to Fahim Ewad, the director of Equistar Limited, the director of the company carrying out the rehabilitation works.

“ The design of the road was changed, some parts of the road reserve encroach to such an extent that we cannot construct footpaths and drainages, “Ewad said.

A structure that has been earmarked for demolition along the road PHOTO JANET MURIKIRA

Last month, a section of residents blocked the road and lit bonfires in Palestina and Barawa areas giving the authority 14 days to repair the road.

According to the Kenya Urban Roads Authority, the 13 kilometer road was supposed to be rehabilitated at a cost of sh.796,371,134.40.

Last year, the expected completion date was pushed to June 2020.

The authority then embarked on giving demolition notices to owners whose buildings had encroached the road reserves.

Buildings housing the millionaires and porcupine nightclubs are among those that have been earmarked for demolition.