It’s over, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has said of City Hall ban on matatus from accessing the city centre, which took effect on Monday.
Mr Sonko on the dawn of Tuesday said he had suspended the ban “with immediate effect” to allow for talks with “all affected parties” to find a lasting solution to congestion in the city.
The about-turn, he said, was informed by the suffering of commuters, matatu operators, employers and businesspeople that was witnesses on Monday.
He announced suspension of Gazette Notice 4479 of May 12, 2017 at 5.42am on Facebook Live from City Hall, the headquarters of Nairobi City County.
“I have noted with concern the plight of Nairobi residents as a result of the ban and hereby announce that the full implementation of the ban has been suspended,” he said.
The county boss had been adamant on Monday that the ban would not be lifted, suggesting that he had President Kenyatta’s blessings on the matter.
While appearing before the Senate’s County Public Accounts and Investments Committee, Mr Sonko said that he had talked with the President on the availability of the buses from the National Youth Service (NYS) to transport the physically challenged and the elderly from their stages to the CBD.
He attributed his change of mind to the lack of contingency measures to address the resultant crisis as a result of the ban.
The governor also said he had taken the decision to allow for further consultations with all affected parties in order to find a lasting solution to the problem of vehicular congestion.