Taxi operators decry police harassment

Taxi operators in Eldoret town are accusing local traffic policemen of harassment despite complying traffic regulations.

The taxi operators told KNA that the officers were soliciting for bribes and those who do not part with money have their licenses confiscated.

The operators who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of being victimised by the police cited several cases where many of them were using duplicate driving licenses after the original ones were confiscated for failing to part with a bribe.

“All that these officers care about is what you have in your hands whether you are on the wrong or not,” said one operator.

“We have decided not to care so much about the state of our vehicles because it does not make sense to adhere to the regulations when you will part with a bribe either way,” he added.

Contacted for comment, Eldoret traffic Base commandant Harry Munene rubbished the operators’ claims, saying they have not and will never harass any taxi operator who adheres to traffic rules.

“Our duty is to enforce law and order and not harassing taxi operators,” ‘said Munene.

Munene explained that any taxi vehicle must have a yellow line, be insured and a photograph of its driver

He further added that the driver must also have a badge, driving license and a personal PSV.

“All taxis that adhere to these rules cannot be stopped along the highway,” stated Munene.

Munene urged the taxi operators to report cases of traffic police harassment.

He called on members of the public, including taxi drivers to report cases of bribe taking by police officers, saying legal action will be taken against them.

By Immaculate Maima

Source: Kenya News Agency