Residents of various towns were on Monday morning left stranded after the withdrawal of public service vehicles opposing government’s decision to impose 16 percent value added tax on fuel products.
In Mombasa, hundreds of travellers were stranded at different bus stations as some matatus boycotted work.
School children who were reporting back to school for their third term were also affected due to lack of vehicles while some commuters decided to walk for more than three kilometres to the central business district of the island city.
Most affected routes in the coastal city included Mtwapa, Bamburi, Likoni and Jomvu.
Travellers revealed that by 7.30am there were no public service vehicles in Bamburi but around 8.30am, a few started operating charging travellers Ksh100 from Bamburi to Mombasa central business district.
Elsewhere in Nairobi, commuters, motorists and consumers felt the devastating effects of the increased fuel prices as PSV fares increased substantially Monday morning.
In Nakuru, a section of motorists held demos on Monday morning in an effort to mount pressure on the government to reverse the high prices of petroleum products that are likely to cause a ripple effect and subsequently the high cost of living for Kenyans.
Nairobi motorists are paying Ksh127 for a litre of petrol, Ksh111.78 for diesel and Ksh94.61 for Kerosene after the VAT was loaded into the pricing formula.
Those in far-flung areas like Mandera will pay as high as Ksh141.61 for a litre of petrol while residents of Bondo, Meru, Bungoma and Isebania will take the hit at above Ksh130 for the same quantity of petrol.
Following the higher fuel costs, economists predicted that it will erode the purchasing power of motorists, push up operating costs for industrialists and transporters, who could then pass the additional costs on to consumers, triggering a wave of inflation in a country which entirely relies on imported petroleum products after it shut down the Mombasa-based refinery in September 2013.
Here is a video of matatu operators demonstrating courtesy of NTV:
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