Boda boda riders have taken back major streets in Nairobi’s central business district (CBD) despite efforts by the City Hall to enforce a ban on them.
The riders operate from the majority of major road intersections on Kenyatta Avenue, Tom Mboya, Luthuli Avenue and Moi Avenue, among others.
In 2018, City Hall banned operation within the CBD following a spike in insecurity.
The riders were directed to drop their passengers in areas such as City Stadium and Ngara.
However, they resisted the directive.
They argued that the move would hurt their businesses as a majority of their pillion passengers were commuters within the CBD and its environs.
Our calls to City Hall Secretary Pauline Waititu on the matter bore no fruit as our calls went unanswered by press time.
John Kimani, a Nairobi resident said the CBD streets have experienced chaos since the boda bodas resumed their services in town.
“They blatantly disregard traffic rules and they drive on walkways, endangering pedestrians’ lives,” he said.
Mr Kimani adds that the operators also have played part in causing traffic jams in the streets as they park on roads.
“For example, along Moi Avenue, you will find riders parking their motorcycles on the road and yet they are not supposed to park there,” he said.
Mr Kimani said if the riders are not removed within the CBD, the crime rate would soon surge like in the past.
“The removal of boda boda within the town was helpful as it reduced cases of mugging that had become rampant in the city,” he said.
Hussein Juma on her part said the City Hall is taking steps back by allowing boda boda into the streets.
“The administration should not allow them to return as it will be hard to then remove them,” she said.
Ms Juma said the riders engage the police and county marshals in running battles every time they attempt to expel the motorcycle taxis from the CBD.