Thika Town roads to be re-carpeted from January
Re-carpeting of Thika town roads by the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA) is set to begin in January.
The multi-million project will see some 13 kilometers of roads within the busy town and its environs given a new face after years of being in dilapidated state.
Interways Works Ltd has been contracted to construct the roads at a cost of Sh 700 million.
Among the roads that will be re-carpeted within the town CBD include Commercial, Cross, General Kago, Haile Sellasie, Harry Thuku, Kenyatta Highway, Kwame Nkuruma, Magoko, Bull and Mama Ngina roads.
Others are Stadium, Temple, Thika Girls, Uhuru Street, Upper hill and Workshop roads. The roads will be recarpetted at a cost of sh 700 million.
Already, survey works for the roads have been completed and mobilization of machinery is at advanced stages to pave way for start of construction in January.
Thika MP Eng Patrick Wainaina said that the project will also see walkways, street lights and a proper drainage system put up noting that the project will be a major boost for traders and investors in the industrial town.
“We are the happiest people in this county having intensely lobbied the government to do the roads that are currently pothole-filled. We expect serious investments within the town after the roads are given a new face,” he said.
Speaking after a meeting with KURA officials to discuss the commencement of the project and the scope of work, Wainaina lauded the government saying that the project will double economic growth of the area.
His sentiments were echoed by Thika District Business Association Chairman Alfred Wanyoike who said that recarpeting of the industrious town roads will provide a conducive environment to traders to do business.
“As traders, we expect to generate more revenues as mobility will be bettered by the new roads. We also expect to grow our investments and in turn employ more workers,” said Wanyoike.
The national government has also commenced construction of Sh 1 billion 24-kilometer road in Gatunyaga in Thika East which will stretch from Muguga-Ngurai-Munyu-Githima-Kang’oki-Kisii and back to the Thika-Garissa Highway.
It is expected to be complete in 30 months and will be the first tarmac road in the sub-county since independence.
Also in Thika, residents have called on the government to expedite division of the expansive constituency to enable them get more educational funding from the state.
The vast constituency enjoys a population of 279,429 people alongside a vast geographical size that cuts across semi-arid areas among them Ngoliba and Gatuanyaga wards near Machakos County.
It is among the Sub Counties proposed for division in Kiambu County owing to its large population to form six new constituencies should the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) sail through.
Parents, most of whom were rendered jobless since the onset of Covid-19 decried that their children have been receiving insufficient bursary allocations as compared to their counterparts in low-populated areas.
Currently, the financially challenged parents said they have been getting a raw deal from the government and cannot sustain their children in school.
Some of the parents who spoke to journalists when area MP Patrick Wainaina issued them Sh 10 million worth of bursary cheques said they could not have taken their children back to school in January due to financial constraints precipitated by the global pandemic that compelled most of them to close down their businesses.
Led by Tabitha Musyoka and Peter Mwangi, the parents called on the government to move quickly and divide Thika to enjoy more state funding.
“We are not content with what we have been getting as compared to other people in areas such as North Eastern. It’s time we all root for equal representation and equitable distribution of resources,” said Mwangi.
On his side, Wainaina regretted that the bursary kitty has been attracting over 10,000 applicants most of whom end up receiving between Sh 3,000 and Sh 5, 000.
He said that as compared to the population, the NG-CDF allocations to the constituency is meager and cannot support both infrastructural and social development of the area.
The independent MP regretted that some underrepresented constituencies have been receiving similar allocations thereby promoting inequity in distribution of national resources.
“Thika especially is among the biggest tax payers owing to the many industries we host yet we get very little from the government. We must think about the BBI document deeply and embrace all the good things in it,” he said.
At the same time, Wainaina said that there was a need for schools to have enough classrooms and observe high standards of hygiene ahead of schools reopening in January to avert exposing learners to the killer virus.
He made the remarks even as most constituencies continue to shift money allocated for bursaries to improve infrastructure in schools to suit the Covid-19 design protocols.