Passengers decry fare increase during festive season

Passengers from Kirinyaga and Embu counties have decried PSV fare hikes. [Photo, Standard]

Passengers from Kirinyaga and Embu counties have decried hiking of fare by PSVs during the festive season and school opening and closing.

The travellers said the fare hikes inconvenience them, forcing residents to cancel plans or delay their journeys when they do not have enough money.

The passengers appealled to the government and matatu owners to standardise fare.

Resident Benard Muchira recounted how he paid Sh100 boda boda fee to be taken to Kerugoya bus park where he was to board a matatu to Nairobi only to find the fare hiked to Sh600 up from the usual Sh350.

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“I was forced to return home as I did not have enough money. I wish the government can compel matatus to have a standardised fare all year round,” he said.

Joyce Makena who was travelling from Embu to Nairobi lamented that the increased fare forced to take part of the money her family had set aside for January rent.

“Why should we pay more money to travel the same distance yet employers do not increase our salaries? From Embu to Nairobi they are charging Sh600 while we had budgeted for the usual Sh350,” she said.

In most of the bus parks, long queues of anxious passengers were seen.

The passengers said they have to cancel some of their travel plans until the fare is reduced.

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Matatu Sacco officials said hundreds of passenger service vehicles were not on duty as they had not complied with traffic laws.

Others were impounded during a crackdown that started in November.

Ketnno Sacco staffer Kamau Njoka appealed to passengers to bear with the situation as traffic rules make it safe for them to travel.

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