The Nairobi County government has the stopped issuance of new licences to matatu saccos after it emerged there are more than 400 unregistered societies operating illegally in Nairobi.
The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) said only 272 registered matatu saccos are operating in the capital.
But records at City Hall indicate that there are 692 registered matatu saccos in Nairobi, meaning 420 are not registered by NTSA.
NTSA’s Manager for Licensing Jackson Mutua said only 272 saccos are registered in Nairobi, excluding those that operate outside the city but terminate their journey in the capital.
“It does not mean they are ghost saccos, but they are not part of the registered saccos under Nairobi,” said Mr Mutua.
This emerged during a Nairobi County Assembly Transport committee meeting that had raised concerns over the increase in the number of unregistered matatu saccos that have been allocated pick-up and drop-off points in the Central Business District.
“This is a serious matter because if they are not registered then how do they pay for the seasonal parking and where does the money go to?” posed the committee’s chairperson Joyce Muthoni.
Utalii Ward representative (MCA) Wilson Ochola accused county officials of colluding with the owners of the unregistered saccos to let them operate, saying there was no way 420 saccos could go unnoticed by the county.
“This reveals a high tendency of corruption and laxity by county enforcement team,” said Mr Ochola.
According to NTSA regulations, for a matatu sacco to be registered it requires a minimum number of 30 vehicles.
Nairobi County Director of Parking Tom Tinega asked both the county and NTSA to reconcile their lists to get the accurate figure.
“By doing this way, it will also be easier to know the number of saccos with genuine licences so that we can know what we are dealing with and the amount of revenue we expect,” said Mr Tinega.
NTSA recommended that no more additional saccos should be registered by City Hall before they can deal with issue.
The committee also resolving that the invalid pick up and drop letters will be revoked for fresh issuance of genuine ones that are renewable periodically.