Petition Filed To Have NTSA Back on The Roads

  • Traffic police officers stop motorist at a checkpoint. On Wednesday, May 13, 2020, NTSA issued a warning to motorists.
    Traffic police officers stop motorist at a checkpoint. On Wednesday, May 13, 2020, NTSA issued a warning to motorists.
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  • The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) could return to Kenyan roads after a petition was filed on Wednesday, December 8.

    The Roads Safety Association of Kenya, the petitioners, moved to the High Court seeking orders to revoke  the directive given by President Uhuru Kenyatta in December 2018 to have the authority withdraw its officers from the roads. 

    According  to the lobby group, fatalities due to road accidents have been on the rise since NTSA's exit.

    NTSA officials accompanied by police inspect a matatu in Nairobi in December 2019
    NTSA officials accompanied by police inspect a matatu in Nairobi in December 2019
    K24 Digital

    “That prior to the third respondent’s removal from the road by the President, loss of lives on the roads were on the decline, but they have now increased,”  the lobby  group stated through its chairman David Kiarie.

    Kiarie argued that the accidents can be avoided if there was compliance with safety measures, the NTSA Act and Traffic Act.

    The lobby group further condemned the move by President Kenyatta to hand over the safety authority's mandate to traffic  police officers who have failed to ensure compliance with the safety measures.

    It noted that NTSA administered and implemented both acts while traffic cops were only keen on the adherence of the Traffic Act.  The petitioner cited the Embu bus tragedy that claimed the lives of 15, noting that it would not have happened under the watch of NTSA.

    Since January, over 4,000 lives have been lost through road carnage.

    In line with preventing further loss, the lobby group recommended  the former's powers  to conduct raids, inspect vehicles to ensure compliance with the Act and even impound cars that do not adhere to road safety reinstated.

    On December 3, Government Spokesperson, Cyrus Oguna, issued an advisory for those planning to travel to different places during the festive season. He advised members of the public to avoid using vehicles that are not licensed but operating as public service vehicles.

    "Using such vehicles may put your life at risk as many of the drivers may not have valid drivers and vehicle licenses to transport passengers," Oguna cautioned.

    He advised them to verify the license of the matatu and the condition on the NTSA mobile phone application. He also asked Kenyans to report reckless drivers through the platform or Sacco offices. 

    Buses and matatus pick up upcountry travellers at Nairobi's famous Machakos country bus station
    Long distance buses at Nairobi's Machakos Country Bus Station in a photo dated November 2017
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