The county government of Nairobi has maintained that the ban of boda boda within the CBD is still in force, even as most operators continue to ignore the directive.
Speaking to Nairobi News on Friday, Director of operations at Nairobi City Inspectorate Department Peter Mbaya confirmed that the operation is still underway and that boda boda motorcycles are being impounded by the city as per the gazette notice issued on January 22.
“Boda boda operators are dodgy. It is very difficult to get all them, that’s why some are still on the roads. But our operation is still going on and we hope soon they will be off the roads,” Mr Mbaya said.
However, a spot check by the Nairobi News revealed that it is business as usual for most boda boda operators in the city.
At the junction of Tom Mboya street and Latema road, along Moi Avenue next to the Bazaar and at the junction of Koinange street and Moktar Daddah street, boda boda operators, mostly in bright green reflector vests, were spotted waiting for customers.
On most roads in the city centre motorcycles ferrying passengers, some not even wearing protective helmets continue to weave through traffic. They are not visibly scared, but when City County vehicles pass by, they take cover, only to emerge from their hiding once the coast is clear.
This is in blatant contravention of a directive issued by county government on Monday banning boda bodas from the CBD.
The gazette notice says the only riders allowed in the CBD will be those providing courier services while those ferrying passengers should drop them off at Ngara and the City stadium.
It warned of hefty fines, arrest and long jail terms for violation of the new rules. The ban was issued to help decongest the city center as well as to curtail criminal activities.
Starehe Member of Parliament Charles Njagua, within whose constituency the CBD falls, has since sued the governor Mike Sonko for issuing the directive without consulting him.
He argues that the ban was impeding the economic activities of the operators who rely on ferrying passengers to eke out a living.