Motorists Raise Concerns After Being Stuck on Expressway

Motorists stuck in traffic along Mombasa Road
Motorists stuck in traffic along Mombasa Road

A huge traffic snarl-up that was witnessed on the Nairobi Expressway on Tuesday, May 24, has left Kenyans with more questions than answers.

Motorists using President Uhuru Kenyatta's flagship project were held in the traffic jam that extended from Syokimau to Mlolongo, a distance of almost 5 kms.

Motorists have raised concerns about the amount of time spent making payments on the Expressway. The exits and entrances of the 27-km road have created choke points which lead to traffic snarl ups as motorists queue to pay to use the road.

Motorists stuck in traffic along the Express Way in Mombasa Road on Tuesday, May 24, 2022.
Motorists stuck in traffic along the Nairobi Expressway along the Mombasa Road section on Tuesday, May 24, 2022.

Traffic on the old Mombasa Road flowed seamlessly, much to the dismay of those who opted to pay and use the Expressway, most of them arguing that the payment process was taking longer than anticipated. 

Kenyans on social media were curious as to why the Expressway has not eased traffic in the city, bearing in mind this was one of the reasons for its construction. They challenged the government and Moja Expressway Company to find a lasting solution to the snarl-up on the country's newest and most expensive road.

Some noted that it is disappointing to pay for usage of the road in a bid to beat the traffic only to get stuck in the same for over an hour.

Kenyans on Twitter also challenged motorists to register for the electronic card usage, which they noted would help decrease the snarl-up being experienced as drivers queue to make cash payments at the toll stations.

Two weeks ago, a similar situation was witnessed after Kenyans took advantage of the trial period which began on Saturday, May 14.

Moja Expressway, the company charged with managing the Nairobi Expressway, on Monday, May 16, addressed the traffic snarl-up, stating that the congestion witnessed in some toll stations was due to the high number of motorists using the cash payment system.

The official explained that using cash requires the attendants at the toll stations to return change to the customers, while the  Manual Toll Card (MTC) requires motorists to stop and tap their cards to pay which is relatively easier.

The Nairobi East toll station of Nairobi Expressway.
The Nairobi East toll station of Nairobi Expressway.
Daily Nation

"A number of motorists were paying for their trip in cash and this transaction takes longer. We also witnessed a lot of MTC users, where drivers are required to tap to pay, and that explains the long queues," the official who spoke to on condition of anonymity he explained.