The government now wants the mandate of the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) expanded to oversee the public motorcycle transport industry.
This is in a fresh bid to curb deaths and injuries in what is one of the leading causes of road accidents in the country and a purveyor of both petty and major crimes.
A report by the National Crime Research Centre (NCRC), which Majority Aden Duale tabled in Parliament last Wednesday, suggests that NTSA works with the National Police Service and county governments to weed out rogue and criminal riders from the industry.
This comes even as the government seeks to make it mandatory for boda boda riders to have adequate training, licences, certificates of good conduct, helmets and reflector jackets before being allowed on Kenyan roads.
Helmets and reflector jackets for the pillion passengers are also a must for their own safety.
The proposals, which also entail registering, regulating, monitoring and governing the industry, must first be adopted by the MPs before execution through legislation.
The lack of regulatory structure in the industry has been blamed for the upsurge of criminals harassing Kenyans.
NCRC, a unit under the Attorney-General’s office, visited 24 of the 47 counties to collect data and establish the security challenges in the motorcycle public transport industry and how to tie the loose ends.
The survey was predicated on the fact that the explosion of motorcycles in Kenya is projected to escalate to new levels as boda boda increasingly becomes a popular means of transport for many rural and urban dwellers.
But even as this happens, there are concerns that the sector has been infiltrated by criminal elements because of minimal regulation and control.
“NTSA in conjunction with the police should carry out compliance and regular inspections and crack down on riders who violate traffic rules,” the report signed by Attorney-General Kihara Kariuki, says.
Also targeted are those without insurance cover and those who overload, speed, operate unregistered motorbikes, riders without licences as well as those riding while drunk.