World
Kenya's buses to go cashless to beat bribes
Publish Date: May 28, 2014
Kenya's buses to go cashless to beat bribes
The scheme will see public minibuses known as matatus equipped with technology that allows users to pay fares using a popular mobile phone-based money transfer service. Reuters Photo
  • mail
  • img
newvision

BUS operators in Kenya on Tuesday unveiled plans for a cashless fare system aimed at protecting passengers from theft and police extortion which they say siphon a third of their revenue away.

The scheme will see public minibuses known as matatus equipped with technology that allows users to pay fares using a popular mobile phone-based money transfer service.

Simon Kimutai, chairman of the Matatu Owners Association, said around a third of passenger fares is lost at the end of each route because of theft or bribery, including by Kenya's traffic police.

"We lose over 30 percent of the revenue collected on a daily basis. For a long time, the matatu business has had no rules, but we hope this will give us a solution," he told reporters.

Kimutai said the system, which is already undergoing tests along several routes in the capital Nairobi, is expected to be fully operational by July 1 -- in accordance with government directives to stop the use of cash and improve security on the network.

The police has repeatedly been ranked as the institution perceived as most corrupt by Kenyans in surveys conducted by the international watchdog Transparency International.

Transport in Kenya has been targeted in recent months by militants suspected of links to neighbouring Somalia's Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab rebels, with buses hit by grenades and bombs, while petty crime is also common on the matatu network.

Officials said the new electronic system will also include security cameras and the ability to track each vehicle.

According to Kimutai's organisation, some 1.5 million people depend on matatus every day across Kenya, where there is no state-run public transport system.

AFP

Related stories

Kenya says tourism industry at stake over unrest

Hundreds of British tourists evacuated from Kenya

Kenya dismisses 'unfriendly' foreign travel warnings

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Paralysed man walks again after breakthrough treatment
A paralysed man can walk again after receiving revolutionary treatment which one of the British scientists responsible hailed as a breakthrough "more impressive than a man walking on the Moon" - although others urged caution....
Pistorius to learn sentence for killing girlfriend
SOUTH African Paralympic athlete Oscar Pistorius today learns his sentence for shooting dead his girlfriend on Valentine's Day last year...
Warring S.Sudan leaders accept
SOUTH Sudan President Salva Kiir and his arch-rival rebel chief Riek Machar have accepted mutual responsibility for a 10-month civil war...
US drone crashes at Niger airport
A US drone crash-landed at Niger's main airport for unknown reasons on Monday, the US army said, forcing the closure of the runway for several hours....
Warring South Sudan rivals meet in Tanzania
WARRING South Sudanese factions were meeting Monday in Tanzania in the latest bid to end a 10-month civil war in which thousands of people have been killed...
WHO declares Nigeria Ebola-free
AFRICA''S most populous nation Nigeria has been declared officially Ebola free but warned that it remained vulnerable as long as the virus was raging elsewhere in west Africa...
Do Ugandan tycoons prepare their children to take over their business empires?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter