Matatu owners in Kenya have indicated their plans to increase fares following the recent increase in fuel prices.
Matatu Owners Association Simon Kimutai said the increase in fares is necessary since the sector is in turbulence.
“We will have to increase fare as the price of fuel has increased by Sh20,” he said.
Kimutai also noted that the protocols by the government to curb the spread of Coronavirus have made things worse. He demanded that they be allowed to carry full capacity.
“This is outright discrimination as SGR, DMUs and planes have been allowed to carry full capacity,” he said.
Kimutai was speaking to the press on Thursday at Luke hotel, Thika road after a meeting with stakeholders in the sector.
His sentiments and demands were echoed in Mombasa by the county’s Matatu Owners Association Chairman and National Vice Chairman Mr Batesi Ali.
He said the current capacity is not ideal for business, as they have been running at a loss since the coronavirus pandemic struck.
“I am disappointed that the fuel prices have risen. We will have no option but to push the burden to the Mwananchi ,” said Batesi.
Adding: “The President understands this(fuel increase) will directly affect the common man, as fuel is an enabler to many sectors of the economy. An increase in fuel means that the cost will be transferred to the passengers.”
He said matatu owners in the Coastal region will meet this week to forge a way forward, with a view to increase the fares.
“We are seeking to increase the fares or the capacity of passengers to be able to break even in this business. Anything less is a loss to the industry,” Batesi said.