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Section of Nairobi Expressway closed at Mlolongo as protesters vandalise fence

A section of the Nairobi Expressway was on Wednesday afternoon closed at Mlolongo, Syokimau and SGR toll stations after vandalism by protesters.

In a statement, Moja Expressway Company advised motorists to only access the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) exit.

“We regret to inform you that a section of the Nairobi Expressway toll services have been temporarily halted at Mlolongo, Syokimau and SGR Toll Stations due to the ongoing demonstrations. Efforts are underway to restore normalcy to the road,” Moja Expressway Company said.

Moja Expressway Company is the firm responsible for the operation of the 27.1km long Nairobi Expressway.

Also read: Raila cancels Kamukunji grounds rally on a day of widespread protests

Images and video clips shared online show protesters first pulling down the fence that separates Mombasa Road and the Expressway. The protesters then move in along the Expressway and start vandalising the flower ports which are normally lined along.

Motorists had to make quick u-turns on both sides after protesters started stoning them. There were no immediate reports of casualties even as police intervened to restore order. Police had a hard time trying to control the crowd that kept surging despite being teargased.

Angry youths during the demonstrations at Mlolongo along Mombasa Road on July 12, 2023. PHOTO | WILFRED NYANGARESI

The situation also drew the ire of National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wah who blamed the Azimio coalition for the chaos that was witnessed at the expressway. He questioned the opposition’s motives in calling for protests that led to the destruction of public property.

Also read: Azimio demos rock Gachagua’s backyard

“This madness by all means must stop. Is this a peaceful protest/procession? And the media will blame the police for dispersing peaceful demonstrators,” Ichung’wah said.

Today’s protests following a similar situation last week during the Saba Saba demos that rocked several parts of the country leading to the death of six people who were shot by the police.

On Tuesday, Inspector General of Police Japhet Koome warned opposition supporters against holding what he termed as illegal demonstrations, saying that organisers had not provided the authorities with any notifications about their planned rallies this week.

“In this regard, no such demonstrations/gatherings/protests will be allowed tomorrow… All lawful means will be used to disperse such demonstrations,” Koome said in a statement.

Also read: Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi teargassed during protests in Kangemi