A new agreement has been reached with regard to the Nairobi Matatu CBD ban that will allow only three PSV’s per Sacco into the city centre.
The deal between Governor Mike Sonko and Matatu operators was reached during a closed-door meeting on Tuesday.
Mr. Jimal Ibrahim, Chairman of the Association of Matatu Operators, said that those who attended the meeting represented different stakeholders within the city and it was aimed at deliberating on how to decongest the city.
“The Governor called the meeting at 5.am today(Tuesday)…We have agreed that only 3 vehicles will be entering the CBD per Sacco for example if its Embassava 3 vehicles, it won’t be like in the past when all vehicles used to enter the city,” he said.
Mr Ibrahim noted that the move is informed by the increasing number of Matatu Saccos in the city from 6 to over 200.
He further lauded Governor Sonko for responding to the plight of operators and commuters but maintained that eventually the Nairobi Matatu CBD ban will be fully enforced.
The Chairman was speaking hours after Sonko made a U-turn and suspended the ban on matatus from entering the CBD.
“What I can tell the people of Nairobi is that soon we are leaving the CBD, they should be prepared. As chairman I tell you, one day, we must leave this town. That is why we must have a good plan for the CBD. The way things are going, we will even have a matatu stage outside City Hall,” he said.
He acknowledged that matatus operators had taken Sonko’s ban as a joke, but said they changed their minds after seeing how serious he was.
“We were taking it as a joke. You will see a big change from today. We shall organise ourselves with the little time we have,” he said.
Mr Ibrahim also revealed that they have formed a joint committee to decongest the city.
He added that there are plans to negotiate with the Kenya Railways and other stakeholders so that alternative transport services are made affordable and convenient.
Mr. Ibrahim, however, urged the governor and IG Joseph Boinnet to get rid of corrupt traffic police officers who demand bribes from matatus and sabotage transport operations in the Central Business District.
“We are asking the governor to remove traffic police officers from the city, they threaten us and are involved in corrupt practices, let the county government control the CBD and traffic officers take over round-abouts,” he said.