1 Dead as Police Descend on Matatu Strike


    One person was confirmed dead after police fired teargas canisters with gunfire also heard.

    Chaotic scenes were witnessed in Kasarani, Nairobi as protesting matatu operators were dispersed by police in a strike that entered its third day.

    With matatu crews protesting the dilapidated state of the Kararani-Mwiki Road, police arrived at the scene at around 10 a.m. and fired teargas to disperse the protests.

    The operators had lit several bonfires with tires and barricaded sections of the road with stones and sticks. A representative from Mwiki Sacco that has several matatus plying the route spoke to Kenyans.co.ke expressing the crews' frustrations.

    A section of the Kasarani-Mwiki road pictured on Wednesday, January 15

    "These protests have been going on since December 2019. This is not a feeder road, it is the main road from Kasarani.

    "The people we have elected like MCAs and the MP are not doing anything. Things on the ground are bad, you should see for yourself," he stated.

    Matatu crews that vowed not to return to work until the road was fixed were seen barricading sections of the road while playing loud music. 

    They were soon joined by their boda boda counterparts who circled various areas with their horns blaring.

    The loud protests that started as early as 6 a.m. were disrupted when police showed up, with the teargas sending protesters scampering away.

    "It is only now that the protests are dying down. The police are still here," our source disclosed.

    The strike which began on Monday saw commuters from the area forced to walk to the Roysambu intersection with the Thika Superhighway to board matatus in the morning.

    Boda boda operators cashed in on the inconvenience to hike fares to Roysambu increasing the cost of the daily commute for residents working in the city.

    In addition, bus booking mobile applications have been notifying users of disruptions on the Kasarani-Mwiki route.