NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 12 – Hundreds of drivers and conductors have been arrested countrywide in the ongoing crackdown on non-compliant Public Service Vehicle (PSVs), operators and passengers.
There were roadblocks in strategic places on roads countrywide in measures aimed at impounding vehicles that are operating without complying with the set rules.
Most of the arrests were made in Nairobi, Mombasa, Nakuru, Nyeri, Machakos and Eldoret even though many matatus were kept off the roads for fear of being impounded.
Machakos Deputy Police Boss Stephene Munene who led the crackdown in his region stated that among those arrested included drivers, conductors and passengers.
“So far we have arrested 35 people and most of them have gone to court for various infractions. We will continue with this operation until evening,” he stated.
He said that among the passengers arrested include those who were not wearing seatbelts and those boarding vehicles carrying more than their capacity.
“We will still be here tomorrow and the days after. So, operators should go and fix their vehicles and ensure they have complied with the law,” he stated.
He further stated that most of the vehicles lacked speed governors, were not in good condition or had invalid road service licenses.
A major transport crisis was reported countrywide on Monday as police kicked off the crackdown.
In the capital Nairobi, a few vehicles were on the road after most operators grounded their vehicles for fear of arrests ordered by Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi, who is implementing the famous Michuki rules.
On routes like Embakasi, Syokimau, Mwiki and Ruiru and Umoja where trains operate, passengers were seen scrambling for space due to the shortage of matatus.
In Mombasa, thousands of commuters were forced to walk to their places of work after matatus withdraw their services.
Only private vehicles, tuk tuks and motorcycles were seen on the roads leading to the island.
Police officers led by Coast Regional Coordinator Bernard Leparmarai and Mombasa Police Commander Johnstone Ipara mounted road blocks on two roads leading to the Central Business District (CBD), Nyali Bridge and at the Makupa Causeway.
A heavy traffic snarl-up was experienced from Nyali Bridge to Bombolulu and Kisauni areas as the officers manning the road blocks inspected every vehicle going into town.