Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has given in to pressure and suspended the ban on matatus accessing the Nairobi CBD. Speaking on Tuesday, Governor Sonko said he had noted the plight of Nairobi residents brought about by the ban and announced that the gazette notice had been suspended as a result. He said that although the ban had good intentions, many citizens including those with health challenges, including expectant mothers were inconvenienced and that the situation was regrettable.
On Monday, many commuters were forced to walk for long distances to access the CBD or board matatus heading to the designated places after the County government shifted bus termini from the city centre. This fuelled opposition and complaints regarding the directive, with many saying it was done hastily and without serious planning or consultations. The Governor also said the County government will consult further with all the affected parties to find a lasting solution to the problem of traffic jams in the city. He said as the co-chair of the Nairobi Regeneration Team, he appeals to the team to hasten the BRT system and the implementation of the CBD commuter train to make decongestion of Nairobi a reality.
Appearing before the Senate Public Accounts Committee on Monday, Sonko had insisted that order in Nairobi must be restored and the time was right to implement the ban, keeping in mind that the city had gained a favourable status in the business global rankings. The stance he had earlier, indicated he wouldn’t relent, but his move has definitely calmed troubled waters.