alexa Mama Ngina Drive park closed one month for upgrade - Daily Nation

Mama Ngina Drive park closed one month for upgrade

Thursday May 2 2019

Mama Ngina Drive Park

Construction begins at Mama Ngina Drive Park in Mombasa County on April 18, 2019, as part of the Sh460 million regeneration project that President Uhuru Kenyatta launched. PHOTO | KEVIN ODIT | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

ANTHONY KITIMO
By ANTHONY KITIMO
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The Mama Ngina Drive recreational park has been closed for one month for an upgrade, amid a protest by traders over loss of business.

The goal is to finish construction that will transform the park into a modern facility where more than 300 traders will operate in a serene environment.

Mombasa County Commissioner Evans Achoki asked tourists and business people to find alternatives as the work makes the area unsafe.

A check by the Nation on Thursday found local and foreign tourists being advised on other locations to visit.

“We have closed the park for at least one month and asked the contractor to work day and night to complete the project in time,” Mr Achoki said.

He added, “We shall prioritise allocation of space to traders [once the project is completed]."

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'SIDELINED'

However, traders including Salim Dzombo complained that they were not informed of the closure in good time.

They also said they were sidelined in decision-making yet they would suffer losses.

“We have been doing business at Mama Ngina Drive for more than 10 years. We were shocked to find the main entrances barricaded," he said.

"The government should have informed us early for the sake of arrangements to move our businesses."

NEAR COMPLETION

The ‘Mombasa Waterfront Project’, which will cost Sh460 million, is 60 per cent complete.

It is expected to transform the area into a recreational park that will have two gateways, paved pathways, lush gardens and restaurants that will edge out the kiosks.

There will also be a Swahili cultural centre and pigeon coops, and foodies will get to sample snacks and meals that the Coast is known for.

Hawkers sell delicacies including cassava crisps and coconut water.