It takes 50 min to cover about 100 metres in a heavy traffic jam in Nairobi an equivalent time taken to cook 29 normal dishes in an average hotel. At an average of a metre per second, you could cover 3KM with that time approximately a walk from town to Wilson Airport.
Yesterday, it took me three and a half hours to move from town to Rongai, for the first time I felt the pain of traffic. Besides that it was raining. Many city residents were stuck in the City and matatu fares were sky high. I watched a passenger sleep, wake up and sleep again. Everyone’s eyes were flooded with exhaustion.
The experience took me back to last year, on a KTN governor’s debate, in which Governor Sonko promised to fix the traffic problem. It makes me wonder whether the governor and the entire city hall fraternity are deliberately ignoring this problem or they’re just not interested in it or maybe they don’t know how to do it- At At last, they’re in Office and they have 5 years of painless salary.
This is what I’d recommend if at all they’re slightly caring. To fix traffic in the City, Kenya Revenue Authority should double or triple import tax on small vehicles. Over 50% of city traffic is caused by personal vehicles which mostly carry one person, with 3 or 4 seats going empty. Increasing tax, will limit the number of people who can afford cars and by implication reducing their number and pollution(as a result of vehicles exhaustion). Personal vehicles occupy a lot of space that could rather be utilized well by having big buses transporting people home.
Another way is by denying public transport vehicles city Access. Matutu drivers drive recklessly with no regard to traffic rules. Disorganization results in chaos a trait that best describes the matutu sector. These drivers are rude and they all want to occupy a lane at the same time. Personal vehicle owners are organized and functional traffic lights are enough to manage them. Cheap Rental bikes should be stationed at the bus terminals (Around Nyayo,muthurwa and Ngara) where the PSVs will be parking to facilitate entry into the city.
Getting rid of other services from the city could also help. Nairobi city is the financial hub of East Africa, it’s the country’s administrative headquarters and also the headquarter to many international organizations. It’s either we expand the city to include Rongai,ngong and kitengela or we make other towns like Mombasa and kisumu centres of other services.
Failure to act is not only costing the country a lot but will as well continue to deflate the economy. Surely we waste an average of 6 hrs daily on traffic, we could do something constructive and productive with this time. We could make the city a 24 hour economy. Instead of borrowing a lot why don’t we save this time for Kenyans to make some money for the economy. An average middle class Nairobian wakes up at 5 am and gets back to bed at 11 pm. Nairobians deserve better treatment after this determination and hard work. Doing that 5 days a week, 20 days a month is no joke.
Is either we act or we let nature frustrate our lives.
It’s either we pressure our government to do something least they continue feeding on your hard earned cash. You pay them , you make them ride in those cars and you pay for their rent in those posh neighborhood;they should pay you back as well through rendering of services.