Matatu Industry Loses Millions to Corruption

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Stakeholders in the Public Service Vehicle (PSV) transport industry have said the sector loses close to Sh 30 million daily as a result of corruption which escalates operational costs.

They have now called on the government to act fast and break all the corruption avenues that stifle development in the industry so as to attract potential investors in the sector.

Some of the barriers in the sector include corruption which has contributed to high operational costs as well as the culture of “Toa kitu kidogo” which has become normalised amongst road users as compared to adherence to the rule of law.

Federation of the Public Transport Operators Chairman Mr. Edwin Mukabana said that Matatu owners bribe their way out in illegal out of court settlements when guilty of traffic malpractices.

He noted that victims of traffic offences often prefer to pay their way out to avoid time wastage due to lengthy and time consuming court processes.

“Exorbitant fines act as a deterrent of the law and offenders find it easier to offer a lesser “payment” in the form of bribe as compared to paying the high fines associated with some traffic offenses,” Mukabana said.

Road blocks have been used for selfish interests as most of them are illegally mounted.

While the traffic act is clear on procedures of mounting road blocks, noncompliance to these guidelines extends prevalence of corruption in the form of corruption.

“We ask all road users to abide by the NTSA requirements for their sake and for the sake of their fellow road users. We must also appreciate that compliance with these will reduce corruption on our roads,” said Matatu Owners Association Chairman, Simon Kimutai.

Kimutai further noted that there have been cases of insurance of motor vehicle licenses outside the normal procedures, driving schools paying premiums to ensure that their students secure driving licenses which has led to an increase in road accidents as unqualified drivers gain access to roads.

Speaking in Nairobi during a Multisectorial Initiative against Corruption in the transport sector, Kimutai urged NTSA to follow strictly the guidelines of SACCO registration which ensures that they shall be only registered if they have a fleet of 30 or more vehicles.

He further suggested that accredited formal training institutions for all drivers, conductors and other key transport actors should be introduced to ensure that they are aware of all laws and regulations governing road use and that they also display road etiquette.

By Babra Adhiambo  and Purity Mumbua



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