New demands from Nakuru matatu sector

Nakuru matatus chairman Steve Muli

Nakuru Town matatu Chairman Stephen Muli wants the Chief Officer for PSM Paul Githinji to keep off Nakuru matatu matters.

Speaking at a press briefing at the new Railways matatu stage, Muli said Githinji has been collecting money from unsuspecting matatu Saccos with the promise that he would allocate them space to operate from. Muli says it is wrong for the matatu owners to be charged and should have gotten the spaces for free

“It was the county that moved us from where we used to operate with the promise that we would be reallocated. We should therefore not be charged to get space in the new stage but should get it for free,” said Mr. Muli.

Muli who also doubles as the Prestige Shuttles chairman said that the new matatu stage is very small and would not be able to accommodate all the matatus in Nakuru.

“The new stage is very small and we can not fit all the matatu saccos and their different routes. The county should not attempt to allocate fewer slots to any Sacco and this will be tantamount to killing the saccos and their businesses,” he added.

Mr. Muli who was accompanied by other matatu stakeholders called on the Nakuru County Government to hasten the process of allocating space at the new stage. Failure to this, he says, they will take it upon themselves to share the available space and if it’s not enough they will go back to n where they used to operate from before COVID-19.

Chairman Stephen Muli has been vocal speaking for the Nakuru matatu sector since they were moved out of the places they used to operate from. For championing the rights of the matatu sector, Muli has been branded a political broker who is being used by some politicians. Something he vehemently denies.

“I’ve been called a political broker for championing the rights of those in the matatu industry. I have been accused of working with opposing politicians. These are all lies. All am concerned about is the welfare of this sector and the future of our investments,” says Muli.

Another Nakuru resident at the presser, Njoroge Njugi, says the new stage was built without public participation from the stakeholders.

“As matatu operators at traders, we were never involved in dialogue with the Governor or any other official from the county. What we are seeing now are cartels from the office of the Governor demanding for cash to be allocated space,” claims Mr. Njoroge.

Also at the presser was London Ward MCA Anthony Nzuki Wachira who said 50% of the slots available at the new stage must go to London Ward residents.

Angry London MCA Anthony Nzuki takes on Lee Kinyanjui

MCA Anthony Nzuki Wachira

London Ward MCA Anthony Wachira Nzuki has taken on Governor Lee Kinyanjui for failures he blames in the Governor’s office.

Addressing the press at the newly constructed matatu termini at Railways Grounds, the UDA MCA blamed the governor for the continued woes facing matatu people and other related stakeholders.

“Since they were removed out of town, the matatu operators have fallen more and more into poverty due to bad business,” said Nzuki.

“Taxis which are being allowed to get into the CBD have taken over the matatu business to the detriment of matatu operators,” added the MCA.

Lately, many people coming to town have preferred using taxis which drop them along Kenyatta Avenue or other preferred places within the CBD. This has eaten a lot into the matatu business.

Nzuki alleges that a cartel within the Governor’s office has been demanding money from matatu operators to be allocated space at the new matatu stage. The selling price according to Nzuki is between Kshs. 200,000 to 300,000.

“I don’t know whether the governor is aware that matatu stages are being sold to matatu operators by a clique of cartels from his office.”

Some of those mentioned by the London MCA include a Mr. Wambugu, Nakuru County Trade Director Mr. Onyango, County Enforcement officer Mr. Wathika, Chief Officer for PSM Mr. Githinji and the Chief of Staff Mr. Gichuhi.

“Governor Lee we don’t want petty fights with you but we are tired of you. You never involve nor consult the people and stakeholders,” Nzuki accused the Governor.

The new matatu stage was to be opened by President Uhuru on the day he came to Nakuru to award a city charter. However, there was a lot of hostility which led to that bit being removed from the program. Since they were moved out of town, there has been a lot of bad blood between the Governor and the matatu operators. At no point has he taken time to engage with them on an amicable solution or way forward according to Nakuru Matatus chairman Mr. Steve Muli.

“We demand that you come and meet with the relevant stakeholders in this stage on Monday. Failure to that, on Tuesday we shall all come to this new matatu stage and allocate it to ourselves,” the angry MCA threatened.

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