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Matatu crackdown leaves Coast residents stranded

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By WINNIE ATIENO
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Hundreds of residents in the coastal region were left stranded following a crackdown on public service vehicles by police and the National Transport and Safety Authority.

The exercise, led by Mombasa police commander Johnston Ipara, affected those coming from Voi, Mariakani, Kaloleni and Mombasa west regions.

Commuters from Mombasa west were dropped at Changamwe roundabout instead of Mombasa CBD.

Traders also complained about losing out on business. “I have walked from Changamwe to Mombasa CBD after drivers heard police were conducting a crackdown. I am tired. I don’t know how I will reach Kongowea to get foodstuff for my hotel, this is so bad,” Ms Jecinta Kamau, a trader, said.

Mr John Mwakisha, a parent, said the activity does not augur well. “I am from Voi. I came to Mombasa to buy school uniforms and books for my daughter who is going to Alliance Girls High School. Tuk tuks are very expensive and I don’t know how I will go back home now that the crackdown has begun.”

Police were targeting vehicles with fake number plates and faulty speed limiters.

Mr Ipara said the exercise will continue as a measure of promoting road safety.

“We must follow the rules; there is no shortcut,” he told matatu operators at Makupa during the inspections.

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