Thika-Magumu road users protest increased crossing of elephants at Kieni forest

By , K24 Digital
On Fri, 24 Jun, 2022 22:29 | < 1 min read
A group of elephants spotted along Thika-Magumu road. PHOTO/Matthew Ndung'uA group of elephants spotted along Thika-Magumu road. PHOTO/Matthew Ndung'u
A group of elephants spotted along Thika-Magumu road. PHOTO/Matthew Ndung'u

Residents using the Thika-Magumu road currently under construction have decried increased herds of elephants along Kathe and forest.

Motorists using the busy road say that due to foggy weather conditions, most drivers cannot view the jumbos from a distance, resulting in commotion and delays along the route.

They said that while confrontation between the wild animals and motorists has been witnessed so far, the forest area remains risky and urges Kenya Wildlife Services (KWS) to deploy officers along the route to avert a crisis.

"The elephants are nowadays on both sides of the road and we fear they might attack us someday. The road is impassable as the contractor has taken years to complete and repair the potholes. This delay might cause a commotion, but before we get there, KWS should rise to the occasion and act," Joseph Murigi, a frequent driver along the route.

The users of the 68-kilometre stretch linking Kiambu, Murang'a, and Nyandarua counties also appealed to the government to consider fencing the entire forest to avoid elephant attacks.

"If KWS can fence both sides of the forest to keep the elephants inside the forest, we will be safe, but in this kind of road and the increased number of elephants, we fear attacks, and KWS should do something, " Monicah Muthoni, another road user said.

Construction of the Ksh 3 billion road started in 2022 but has remained incomplete over the government's alleged delayed release of funds to the contractor.

Road users along the routes touching Mang'u, Gakoe, Gatukuyu, Kamwangi and Kanjuku villages have been up in arms with the contractor for digging trenches on both sides of the road, which they said have caused numerous accidents and vehicles are forced to squeeze at the pothole-filled narrow centre of the road.