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Police on Wednesday warned motorists to expect traffic disruption on Thika Superhighway and Uhuru Highway on Thursday as the World Rally Championship (WRC) Safari Rally drivers prepare for the flag off.
Nairobi Area traffic commander Joshua Omukata said the two city roads will be partially closed to motorists from 6am on Thursday, June 24 to pave way for the Safari Rally flag off at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC).
Mr Omukata said that the cars will leave Safari Park Hotel at 6am before heading to Kasarani stadium near Ngomongo. The drivers will then at 8am proceed to KICC where the ceremonial flag off will happen at 12:46pm.
“As the official World Rally Championship (WRC) Safari Rally is a very important event not only Kenya but worldwide, I would like to urge motorists to avoid Uhuru Highway and Thika Road as the traffic will be disrupted for several hours. The rally cars will leave Ngomongo, Kasarani at 8am using Thika Superhighway then connect Uhuru Highway before they are flagged off at 12:46pm,” he told journalists in Nairobi.
According to the official WRC spectator guide, there will be a press conference at 11am on Thursday followed by the ceremonial flag off at 12.46pm.
After the flag off, Mr Omukata said that the vehicles will drive through Parliament Road, Haile Selassie Avenue, Uhuru Highway, Wangari Mathai Road and head back to Ngomongo, Kasarani via Thika Superhighway.
At Kasarani, the WRC cars driven by the best in the world, will begin their 2021 WRC Safari Rally campaign in earnest with a side-by-side race on the purpose-built Super Special Stage dubbed Super Spectator Stage (SSS) from 14.08pm.
Close -off point
The drivers will be allowed to do the recce in their proper rally cars, a distance of 5.15-kilometres.
“From Ngomongo, the rally cars will then head back to Thika Superhighway and pass through Muthaiga as they head to Limuru on their way to Naivasha,” added Mr Omukata.
On Tuesday, the government said that several major roads will be closed ahead of the WRC Safari Rally.
In a gazette notice, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i said the public roads would be closed to all commercial vehicles weighing above three tonnes.
The move, he noted, was aimed at guaranteeing safe and secure operations of the WRC event.
The affected highways include Eldoret-Nakuru highway, with the close-off point being Eldoret.
The road will be closed on Thursday, June 24, 2021, between midnight and 7pm. Other closed roads included Kericho –Nakuru highway, with close-off point being Kericho on Friday between midnight and 7pm.
On Saturday, the Nyahururu-Nakuru highway will also be closed, with close -off point being Nyahururu with closure time being within the same hours.
On Sunday, two major roads will be closed that will include Mombasa-Nairobi-Maai -Mahiu-Naivasha highway, with the road being closed at Mlolongo.
The other affected road is Narok-Maai Mahiu which will be closed at Suswa.
“After 6am heavy commercial vehicles weighing three tonnes and above will be required to park at the nearest designated parking and await the above road opening,” read the gazette notice.
The Kikopey-Elementaita village road will also be closed on Friday and also on Saturday between 2pm and 6pm on each of the days.