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Safaricom warns of network disruptions during Obama visit

Mobile service provider Safaricom on Thursday warned Nairobi residents to brace themselves for disruptions of the network during the three days that United States President Barack Obama will be in the city.

The disruptions will be on and off beginning Friday afternoon, and will depend on the location of President Obama and other attendees of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit.

The areas likely to be affected, and which have already been scheduled for roads closures, include residential areas near Mombasa road, Thika road, Limuru road, Uhuru highway and Waiyaki way.

Also to be affected will be areas near State House, Nairobi, where President Barack Obama will hold bilateral talks with his host President Uhuru Kenyatta.

“We recognize the fact that as the most protected individual in the world, there will be some security measures undertaken by his (Obama) team which could include the temporary disruption of mobile signals close to where the President is at any given time,” read a statement posted on Safaricom’s website.

“Accordingly, we wish to assure all our customers that there shall be minimal disruption to the network during the US President Obama’s visit later this week.”

The mobile service provider however assured that it had taken measures to ensure that locations where the summit will be held shall have fast network through network optimization.

It has also upgraded its fixed data capacity in order to facilitate the live streaming of the event.

President Obama is expected to arrive Friday evening for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit that kicks off on Saturday at the UN Offices in Gigiri.

The US President will on Sunday hold a public event at the Kasarani Indoor Arena.