Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen has taken a stand to protect digital taxi owners and drivers from exploitation by app companies that disregard established regulations. Murkomen made this assurance on Friday during a meeting with digital taxi operators who presented a petition to him at his Transcom House office in Nairobi.
The operators have been voicing their concerns about the unfair treatment they often face from digital app companies and have requested that the existing industry laws be enforced to safeguard their rights.
During the meeting, CS Murkomen conveyed his commitment to address these challenges by taking strong action against app companies that do not adhere to the established regulations. He affirmed that he had initiated this regulatory process earlier in the Senate alongside Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja. Now that the regulations are in place, the CS emphasized that it is the appropriate time for enforcement.
“I’m ready, I have not started this work now, we started this (regulatory process) in the Senate with Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja. The regulations have come into force and I agree with you that it’s now time for enforcement,” he said.
Expressing gratitude for the peaceful presentation of the petition, CS Murkomen pledged to hold a stakeholder meeting that includes all players within the sector to address the grievances highlighted by the digital taxi operators.
“We will call a meeting and CEOs of all apps operating in Kenya must attend together with their representatives. Come with evidence and select around 100 people to present your concerns. Tukipata kampuni flani ndio inaleta shida, mi nazima yote,” Murkomen said.
The key demands presented in the petition include the implementation of a robust pricing mechanism that addresses concerns about low and unsafe rates. Additionally, the operators are seeking the establishment of a comprehensive grievances handling policy and guidelines that can effectively manage the work engagements between drivers, vehicle owners, and the app companies.
CS Murkomen clarified that the existing laws relevant to these issues are already in place and reiterated his commitment to ensuring their strict enforcement by all players and stakeholders within the digital taxi industry.
“What we are talking about here is not about the lack of law, we are talking because of adherence to the law,” he emphasized.
As the digital taxi industry seeks fair treatment and equitable practices, CS Murkomen’s assurance serves as a beacon of hope for digital taxi owners and drivers who are looking forward to a more just and regulated operational landscape.