Ngong road matatus end strike
Normalcy has returned to the Ngong-Nairobi CBD route after a day-long strike by matatu operators plying the route on Wednesday.
The public service vehicles (PSVs) that had been grounded on Wednesday resumed operations albeit with hiked fares of Sh120 to Nairobi.
The crowds of stranded passengers witnessed at Ngong bus terminus yesterday were not a fixture come Thursday.
There was no sign of matatus belonging to Super Metro Sacco which sparked Wednesday’s protests from the Ngong matatu operators protesting the entry of the Sacco into the route.
The strike dragged for the entirety of the day with only pockets of matatus returning to the road at night but not plying the entire route terminating their journey at Karen.
The PSVs charged between Sh150 and Sh250 leaving commuters stranded at the Railways stage.
Only Kenya Bus branded matatus charged Sh100 to Karen.
Commuters heading past Karen were forced to use private vehicles or bodaboda to their destinations parting with an extra Sh100 and Sh200.
“We are relieved the matatu operators have seen sense and ended the strike. The pain we went through yesterday was unfortunate. I had to use Sh1000 to get to Nairobi,” said Paul Ndirangu, a passenger.
“We paid Sh120 as fare to Nairobi. Though it is better than what we parted with on Wednesday this madness of hiking fares by Ngong matatus has to come to an end. Super Metro should be protected and allowed to operate as they are professional and don’t hike fares at will,” said another commuter Jane Wangari.
Wangari’s sentiments are shared by many Ngong residents who welcomed the entry of Super Metro Sacco into the Ngong-Nairobi route on Monday.
“Let them strike and even withdraw their services for good. Super Metro can operate alone and satisfy everyone on the route. They should even ply all the routes in Nairobi,” said Dan Onyango.
“They can withdraw completely with their poor customer care and expensive fares. Super Metro has enough matatus to ferry commuters and will in fact help in reducing the fare,” said Cynthia Wanjiru.
Announcing their entry, Super Metro management promised to serve the commuters using the route with utmost efficiency and professionalism.
“Many thanks to the entire Ngong fraternity for welcoming us warmly into your home. Our highest priority is to serve and satisfy you thru our services,” read in part a statement from the Sacco
The operators alleged that the new matatu Sacco has denied locals a chance to get employed as crew in their matatus as well as lowering fares from Sh100 to Sh80.