Transport stakeholders meet today to review operation modalities

Wednesday, July 8th, 2020 00:00 |
Matatu Owners Association chairman Simon Kimutai.

Public service transport sector players were yesterday making final touches to comply with ministry of health guidelines even as it emerged that the government is likely to hold a stakeholders meeting today to deliberate on the new protocols issued to the industry.

This came on the day hundreds of travellers seeking to travel to various parts of the country were stuck at various bus stations following President Uhuru Kenyatta directive lifting the cessation of movement in and out of Nairobi, Mombasa and Mandera counties.

Matatu Owners Association chairman Simon Kimutai and Federation of Public Transport Operators Edwin Mukabana told People Daily they will be meeting the government today to chat the way forward.

The duo who accused the government of ambushing them with new protocols that were not part of the documents they submitted before said the government is yet to communicate to them the protocols that they want the players in the sector to adhere to before starting upcountry operations.

“We will be seeking audience with the related ministry to get to know what exactly they are needed to do before resuming their countrywide  operations,” said Kimutai.

And yesterday, major bus stations in Nairobi and Mombasa witnessed influx of travellers who were previously locked up in the counties due to the cessation of movement.

Some of those who wanted to travel cut short their trip as  most of the booking offices remained closed as PSV operators embarked on a process of compliance as directed by State.

In Nairobi county, players want the government to ensure a free issuance of clearance certificates without pay.

At various bus terminus within the city centres most buses plying the upcountry routes had not resumed operations as travelers were yet to make any bookings due to lack of money as most of them have been out of employment.

Most of the operators who are grappling with this challenge include Easy Coach, Guardian, Transline and are yet to resume operations with their buses still at the parking bays.

At the Machakos Country-bus, the entire bus park was deserted save for a few busses that operate within.

At Buxton bus station, Malindi bound public service vehicles resumed operations from Mombasa-Malindi after adhering to the set regulations.

In Thika town, matatu operators were back to normal business though on a slow pace as most passengers delayed to move mostly because of financial constraints occasioned by economic shockwaves brought about by Covid-19.

In Eldoret town, most of the booking offices remained closed as PSV operators embarked on a process of compliance first as directed by State.

 In Marsabit, residents, whose second main occupation from livestock keeping is trade welcomed the move saying they would be able to replenish depleted stocks for their businesses. Reporting by Harrison Kivisu, Mathew Ndung’u, David Ndolo and Sebastian Miriti

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