Matatu Operators in Garissa have rejected the newly proposed motor vehicle inspection regulations 2019, saying if implemented, they would promote corruption and insanity on the roads.
In the proposed regulations, the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) wants to decentralize inspection centers across the country and hand over to private entities.
The NTSA also proposes that inspection center license that cover three years would go for Sh500, 000.
It also proposes to license privately owned vehicle inspection centers to conduct inspection tests on its behalf in a fee sharing arrangement between the authority and the private operator.
Currently, there is only one inspection center in Garissa that serves the North Eastern region. This forces motor vehicle operators from Mandera and Wajir to travel over 800kms and 500kms respectively for inspection services
Speaking during a Public Participation Forum on the draft motor vehicle inspection regulations 2019 at Nomads Hotel on Tuesday, a Tuktuk operator, Hassan Hussein said the regulations would lock out youth from employment since the amount of money to establish an inspection center is out of reach for them.
“Surely how many youths in this county have Sh.500, 000 to cough out for license, and mind you we are yet to talk about investing in equipment. The authorities should review the figure downward and come up with a reasonable one that motivates more youth into venturing into the business,” Hussein said.
“We have a feeling the proposed regulations will not have legislative muscles that will compel matatu operators and private owners to take their vehicles for inspections since they view the whole thing as privately owned entity,” he added.
On his part, another operator, Dubow Barre said having privately owned vehicle inspection centers would encourage corruption.
He blamed the police for doing little to prevent accidents, saying that they have a tendency of doing inspection after an accident has occurred instead of doing it before they happened.
Dubow urged the NTSA to formulate a law that would regulate the privately run motor inspection centers so as to keep them on tow and fight corruption that he said was rampant within the police force.
Majority of those who spoke were in agreement that the services should be decentralized.
A Board member from the NTSA, Francis Mwongo said the essence of the forums was to collect views from stakeholders before the Cabinet Secretary for Transports gazetted them.
“We are all doing this to bring services closer to the people in support of agenda 4 and wealth creation to the wananchi as well as create employment for our youth. The bottom line is that we want our roads safer,” Mwongo said.
By Jacob Songok