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Obama’s advance team takes over Nairobi hotels

Major hotels in Nairobi are fully booked as Kenya prepares to welcome US President Barack Obama in 10 days.

A spot check showed that most of the five-star hotels in the city had already been taken over by Mr Obama’s advance security teams, with surveillance enhanced.

Serena Hotel, Hotel InterContinental, Laico, Safari Park, Crowne Plaza, Holiday Inn, Norfolk, Sankara and Kempinski registered full bookings, with most of the guests said to be Americans.

NO RESERVATIONS

“We can’t make reservations up to July 27. You are welcome to make bookings after this date,” said a reservation officer at the Serena Hotel.

President Obama is expected in Kenya on July 24 for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit, which will be attended by more than 3,000 delegates.

So far, it is not clear which hotel will host the US leader.

There are no indications yet that he will prefer the Hotel Inter-Continental that has previously hosted his Vice-President, Mr Joe Biden, and former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, among other dignitaries.

Movements on several roads around the city are expected to be restricted.

ROADS TO BE BLOCKED

By Tuesday, the police were yet to release information on the roads to be blocked to ensure the safety of the American President’s delegation.

More than 150 journalists will travel to Nairobi to cover the summit. Mr Obama has 20 US journalists in his entourage.

The security teams have already shipped into the country the US President’s armoured vehicles that are expected to be part of his motorcade.

Top security officers have also spoken of the shipping in of sniffer dogs by the US State Department to ensure adequate security during the visit.

A State Department official indicated that the American leader would also spare time to visit the Nairobi National Park.