Just days after Uhuru Park was temporarily closed down for renovation, Nairobi residents have turned roundabouts in major highways into recreational spaces.
This has prompted Nairobi MCA’s to raise the alarm after it came to light that the number of families turning to roundabouts for leisure has increased.
The issue was first raised by Babadogo MCA, Geoffrey Majiwa, who gave an example of Thika road stating that the situation was intense, especially on weekends.
“If you drive along Thika Road, you will find out that the many roundabouts that act as exits to the main highway are a hive of activities, with people relaxing with their families,” Majiwa remarked.
While addressing the issue, Majiwa expressed that this has been attributed to the limited leisure space left for the huge Nairobi population.
The MCA’s have brought this issue into the limelight, arguing that it puts lives at risk as Nairobi has many careless drivers.
“This is a disaster-in-waiting. When a drunkard will drive on such roundabouts one Sunday afternoon, we will be telling a different story,” Majiwa added.
The MCA’s now appeal to City Hall and the Nairobi Metropolitan Services(NMS) to find open spaces in residential areas, for residents to use instead of risking their lives on highways.
This was backed by Anne Kananu, former Nairobi mayor, who called upon Lieutenant-General Mohamed Badi’s administration to ensure that creating open spaces in Nairobi is done fast.
“Though we may not have enough spaces in residential areas, there are spaces like the one I saw when driving along Outer Ring Road on the side of Buruburu facing Umoja, which is very beautiful. If it’s upgraded to a park, it can be used by people who live in that area so that people don’t sit in the roundabouts,” he voiced.
Notably, Dandora Area III MCA, Charles Thuo, asserted that all that needed to be done was to find a space to breath, and not necessarily a beautiful space.
“Beautiful spaces are not only exceptional but rare to find. People who don’t live in leafy suburbs don’t have places to go to for fresh air,” he noted.
The MCAs further urged NMS to not only open these spaces, but protect them since many are turned into spots for conducting uncouth activities.