Rogue drivers cautioned as festive season approaches

Counties Editor's Pick Kiambu Legal

Thika Law Courts will be ruthless while handling cases involving reckless drivers and bodaboda operators during this festive season, Chief Magistrate, Stella Atambo has said.

Atambo said the courts will give stiff penalties as required by law to drivers found flouting traffic rules during this period.

Speaking in Thika town during celebrations to mark the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, Atambo while urging motorists to be disciplined on the roads said the penalties will deter others from flouting the traffic rules.

“The courts will be tough on motorists this time. The penalties will be stiff, not as before and we urge motorists and bodaboda operators not to fall victim by adhering to the traffic regulations,” she said.

This comes as reports show that over 4,000 Kenyans have died from road accidents as of mid-November this year, according to the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA), surpassing the 3,947 fatalities recorded in 2021.

The Magistrate at the same time said road accident cases that involve compensations and those that attract less than Sh1 million shillings, will now be dealt with by the small claims court.

This, she said, would help reduce the backlog and delay of traffic compensation cases, where victims have spent years in search of justice.

She said the cases will be heard and determined within six months.

However, Atambo pointed out technicalities that are attributed to delaying these compensation cases, blaming some lawyers and respondents, especially insurance companies for the delaying tactics that make it impossible for the judiciary to deliver justice on time.

She called on all stakeholders to cooperate with the courts for quick service delivery.

“The delays in courts have made it difficult for accident victims to get justice and compensation and we hope the small claims court will help expedite these cases,” said the magistrate.

NTSA Director for Registration and Licensing, Christopher Wanjau, said NTSA would push for the introduction of a curriculum in schools to train learners on road safety as a measure to reduce accidents.

Thika NTSA Central Region Deputy Manager, Kendi Mutuma, cited the Nairobi -Nyeri and the Thika-Garissa highway as having recorded the highest number of road accidents in the region.

She said most of the road accident victims were pedestrians, calling for extra caution when crossing the roads.

Anna Wanjiru a resident of Kihumbuini is yet to heal after she was knocked down by a drunk bodaboda operator where she broke her leg.

Wanjiru said she didn’t take legal redress since the motorcycle was not insured. She urged bodaboda operators to take care appealing to the judiciary to help victims get justice on time.

By Muoki Charles

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