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Commuters, traders’ pain as ban on matatu access to CBD takes effect

Stranded commuters

Residents and visitors arriving to Nairobi City early Monday morning from upcountry were among the hardest hit as the ban on matatu’s access to the central business district took effect.

Thousands of commuters and traders were left stranded, some opting to walk long distances.

Even as some chose to work to the new matatu stages, others could not locate the new pick up points for matatus going their route.

Some matatu operators chose not to go to their newly allocated stages, saying that they were congested hence leaving commuters before they reached their congestion. This mostly affected commuters along Jogoo Road.

At the city centre where the ban has been effected, former stages remained ghosted by matatus, while crowds decorated the CDB. However, pickpockets took advantage of the congested city to steal from unsuspecting commuters.

Some of those who did not know where to pick their mataus were stolen from by people who pretented to help them with luggage to the new pick up points.

Along major roads traffic jams ensued as most people chose to use personal cars, while the enforcement of the ban by traffic police and city askaris slowed down traffic.

The County Government of Nairobi announced the ban last week, declaring a total ban of matatus from entering the CBD.

“The operators are required to take note that the changes take effect as from 3rd day of December 2018 and all previous gazette notices/lette allocating any other place as picking and dropping areas within the CBD are hereby revoked and become null and void,” read the notice signed by the acting county secretary Pauline Kahiga Waititu.

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In the new move, all routes accessing the CBD from Waiyaki Way/Uhuru Highway, Kipande Road and Limuru Road will dock at the Murang’a Road (Fig Tree) terminus A.

All routes accessing CBD fom Thika Road up to and including Ruiru and Kiambu Road will pick and drop passengers at Fig Tree terminus B.

All vehicles that go past Ruiru but branch off before or at Kenol Town on Nyeri/Meru-Nairobi road will use Desai Service Road Terminus.

All vehicles that go past Kenol Town on Nyeri/Meru-Nairobi Road as well as upcountry vehicles accessing Nairobi via Waiyaki Way will use Park Road Terminus.

Vehicles using Juja Road, Ring Road Ngara and Park Road will use Ngara Road Terminus while all urban and peri urban routes from Mombasa Road/ Lang’ata Road will use Hakati Terminus.

Urban and peri urban routes from Ngong Road will converge at Railway Terminus while vehicles from Jogoo Road/ Lusaka Road will use Muthurwa Terminus.

All high capacity PSV vehicles from upcountry will use Machakos Terminus.

Vehicles on circular route will connect all termini to CBD and Upperhill while those on diametric routes will use the Central Bus Station.

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