Residents of Baringo have expressed mixed reaction over the government’s directive to allow public service vehicles (PSV) resume carrying full capacity after close to a year’s restriction imposed to contain the spread of Covid-19 disease.
Speaking to KNA at Kabarnet’s main bus park, a driver, Moses Kissinger said that despite the government’s move to lift the ban, passengers are worried they might expose themselves to the risk of contracting the virus due to congestion as a result of limited social distance.
“Passengers feel that they are crowded hence at risk of contracting Covid-19 more than ever before because of lack of social distance,” said Kissinger.
Kissinger asked the county government to chip in and fumigate all stages within the town and vehicles to ensure that both the passengers and drivers are protected from the dreaded disease.
However, some passengers said that they can now breathe a sigh of relief since fares will reduce drastically for instance going to Nakuru from Kabarnet will now cost sh350 down from Sh 500.
A business woman, Jannifer Joyce, frequently operating between Kabarnet and Nakuru towns lamented that travelling on full capacity vehicles will put them at risk of contracting the fast-spreading disease due to overcrowding.
Ms Joyce said that she will be forced to reduce the number of times she has to travel thus limiting the chance of coming in contact with many people.
“Reduction of fares will help me during these tough economic times as the savings will make me invest in other viable ventures, as I normally travel from Nakuru to Kabarnet at least twice a week,” she added.
Sally Chepkoro a secretary at Crossroad Sacco, lauded the government for the decision terming it a thoughtful move since vehicle owners had suffered a lot due to reduced incomes.
Chepkoro said that the move will benefit both the vehicle’s staff and their customers given that resuming normal capacity will allow them to revise fares downward.
She assured that the Saccos will ensure that passengers strictly observe the laid down Ministry of Health guidelines and protocols like sanitizing, washing hands and wearing face masks to save their lives.
By Betty Malakwen and Joshua Kibet