Here’s Why Only Long-Distance Buses Will Increase Fares


Matatu Owners Association (MOA) has announced that it will not increase fares despite the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA) increasing pump prices to a record high.

Speaking to Kenyans.co.ke, Brendan Marshall, a traffic coordinator and senior MOA member, confirmed that the rates for both off-peak and peak hours would stay unchanged, as the adjustments had already been made during the September-October review.

He, however, added that long-distance buses would adjust the fares between Ksh100 to Ksh500. 

As a result of the fuel price increase, buses will also stop offering onboard services such as refreshments.

A petrol station attendant fueling a vehicle in April 2020.

Photo

EPRA

“For instance, during morning hours, we will still charge Ksh120 or Ksh150. After peak hours, the price will drop to Ksh100 for the better part of the day,” he noted.

“We will just extend the peak hours which previously lasted from 6:00 am to 8:00 am, and will now run up to 10:00 am.”

The reason behind adjusting the prices for long-distance travel, according to Marshall, is to maximise profits.

He, however, stated that the government should hold a meeting with transport stakeholders in order to create a win-win situation, acknowledging that Kenyans will be subjected to harsher economic times.

“Since the business (transport) is not booming, they maximise on every travel. The government should come up with something that we can feel, not just words. It needs to be a win-win situation. It’s high time we enjoy doing business,” he explained.

“The business environment is not conducive; you have to pay loans, insurance premiums, city council averaging Ksh7,000. Traffic officers also expect their cut. So this is a crisis that needs to be resolved.”

Failure by the government to cushion Kenyans from the high fuel has resulted in the matatu sector taking extreme measures to stay afloat. 

Marshall highlighted instances where passengers are charged higher prices than the figure they were told by the conductor while boarding the vehicle.

“It’s high time they find alternative ways to deal with all this. All these efforts they are saying they are doing are a drop in the ocean,” he indicated.

In the latest review, Super Petrol, Diesel and Kerosene will retail at Ksh217.36, Ksh205.47 and Ksh203.06, up from Ksh211.64, Ksh200.99 and Ksh202.61 respectively.

A photo of motorists using two lanes to access the Mombasa CBD from Buxton

Photo

JOHN CHESOLI





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