Cabinet secretary for Roads and Transport, Kipchumba Murkomen has promised to convene a digital taxi forum. Speaking on the 18th of August, the CS promised to invite all stakeholders.
Mr. Murkomen had received a petition from drivers of digital taxi hailing companies detailing the challenges they face in their day to day operations. As part of their petition, the digital taxi hailing drivers outlined a number of grievances.
Firstly, the drivers seek the development of a pricing standard mechanism that addresses the low rates that they claim have been set by the taxi app companies. Secondly, the drivers want a robust channel that will enable them to air grievances and get resolutions.
The third key item of the petition is the establishment of a trade union that will work to represent the drivers. The drivers are seeking to be identified as workers of the digital taxi companies.
CS and Digital Taxi Companies Consultations
The cabinet secretary indicated he had previously had consultations with a number of the digital taxi companies. During the meetings with companies such as Bolt and Yego, the companies had also aired their grievances and business challenges.
The CS acknowledged he is aware of the challenges facing the sector. Mr. Murkomen added that there are existing laws to govern the sector, However, he noted the rules have not been observed by the various stakeholders.
“We are not having this conversation because of the lack of laws, we are having this conversation because the law has been ignored,” stated Mr. Murkomen.
In a statement, the cabinet secretary stated he will convene a consultative forum in September bringing together the drivers, the digital taxi companies, NTSA and other Government agencies with a view of finding lasting solutions to the existing challenges.
He reiterated, his ministries commitment to tackling emerging issues in different sub-sectors in the transport industry with the intention of creating an enabling environment. Additionally, he indicated that they are consistently looking to attract investors and encourage business growth. The ministry hopes to achieve this without disenfranchising the hustler operators and the end users.
The town hall style meeting of stakeholders will see 100 representatives for the drivers present. The CS asked the drivers to prepare their points and accompany them with evidence.
The cabinet secretary warned that any company deemed to be the root of all problems may face de-registration.