Public Service Vehicle operators within the Nairobi Central Business have decried harassment and frustration in their operations and have now threatened to go on strike and stage a protest to the office of Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja if their cries are not addressed.
The operator, drawn from the different Saccos that operate in the CBD, have accused the Nairobi City County Chief Officer for Mobility and Works Boniface Nyamu of stifling their business by incessantly harassing them and demanding for bribes in return to their smooth operations.
The operators have claimed that Nyamu has been disorganizing the structure of operations which the saccos have put in place to self manage themselves but Nyamu has been destabilizing their operations and instil fear to the operators before demanding for bribes to allow them continue operating in the CBD.
They claimed that Nyamu has been previously caught on camera demanding money from the operators and now the frustrations are threatening to cripple their operations.
“Any time we seek for a meeting, it is not successful because Nyamu ensures that he has disorganized the plans and then he comes to us with threats. We are forced to mobilize money from our vehicles and give to him. In fact, severally he has been caught on camera demanding for these bribes and we fell that because he has really frustrated our business, we will have a peaceful protest to the office of Governor Sakaja and we will demand for his removal,” the matatu sacco operator said in confidence for fear of reprisals from Nyamu if he mentions his name or Sacco that he comes from because he will raid and close their picking and dropping slots.
The matatus have planned to protest to the Governor’s office following several efforts to have a meeting with Nyamu and his Mobility department to agree on the modalities of operations in the CBD, efforts which have been futile.
In their demands to Governor Sakaja, the Sacco members are demanding for the removal of Nyamu form the docket with immediate effect failure to that that they will paralyze all transport system in the city by closing all corridors in and out of Nairobi, noting that he has an authoritarian mode of operations and which has seen them unable to map out a solution to the congestion that is caused by Matatus in the CBD. He is also accused of having a tendency of in-subordinating his seniors at the county government.
Earlier this month, Nyamu was again embroiled in yet another saga after he was adversely involved in a land tussle in Lavington pitting parents of Light International Academy; a school situated in Lavington, and private businessmen over threaten the alleged grabbing of a City County property that was originally a parking space, but un-procedural grabbed by private businessmen who turned it to a private car wash business.
According to the parents, the alleged grabber blocked a pathway that leads to the school and is said to have the backing of Nyamu. Investigations pointed to Nyamu over the irregular allocation of the property belonging to the Nairobi City County to the businessman who intended to set up a car wash business without following the proper procedures in acquiring the property.
The acquisition further never considered the potential impact on other area users who might be affected by changing the space from a parking area to a car wash including the school at the area.
The said businessman is said to have closed the parking at night, accompanied by a group of goons when taking over the place and never involved either the area community representation or the school’s administration.
When reached for his comment, Nyamu arrogantly retorted that the county had given any letter through his office for a car wash to be set up at the area and that there was letter allocating the said businessman the road reserve,
The car park, apart from inconveniencing the Light International Academy will as well deny the county government of revenue that is collected daily in parking fees.
Nyamu told off journalists asking them to advise the parents that demonstrations are their constitutional right and as such they should move ahead with their threats.The parents questioned the motives of the late night moves by the businessman in setting up the car-wash noting that anything that was legitimate would have been done above board and in broad daylight.