If all goes well, like most of us are praying for, we will soon have a new government in office, our hopes as matatu workers are very high this time round. During the campaign season before the general elections,one of the presidential contender and his running mate called a meeting with some representatives of matatu industry.It was an open discussion and the leaders very keenly, listened to the issues we raised concerning our vocation and mostly/our cries about the problems we face in our jobs. They promised to look for solutions once they come to power. Today; the was aspirant; is the president elect.
We hope the court petition challenging their election will not take us back to the ballot, but all the same we are ready. If the supreme court rules in their favor, then we expect the new leaders to keep their word.we have heard so many promises being given to electorates during campaign times but this time round we have faith that they will reach out to this service providers and help them instead of condemning them like all the other Kenyans do, whenever there is an accident.
We are still very worried about the traffic amendment bill 2012 that was designed and meant to punish matatu drivers with hefty fines and long jail term. we are afraid that it doesn’t turn out like it happened in Israel, long ago after David’s reign; when one of his son’s became king and decided to consult his younger generation for advice instead of the old wise elders who had been close to his father. when people were expecting ease and comfortable life,He increased their burdens and brought more sufferings.
I really hope Uhuru kenyatta will reach out to matatu operators and help them make a career out of their jobs through the ministry concerned. It is high time that a lasting solution was found that will improve the services we render to our customers,bring sanity in our roads and at the same time help create permanent jobs for thousands of matatu workers country wide.
I’ve been writing and posting for almost three years now, hoping somebody with authority will one day borrow something useful from the blog and perhaps consider our point of view when dealing with issues touching on our career in the matatu industry/- I wanted to say; our casual jobs.
A report by Society for international development titled ‘Informal’ transport sector workers in the Great Horn of East Africa. while analyzing this blog, noted that;- I quote; “There are two known ways drivers in the Matatu industry cope with the stresses and challenges they experience every single day, )- taking drugs and/or drinking alcohol. Drugs and alcohol consumption serves as an outlet for these drivers who feel trapped with no real way out. In most cases, the drivers and crew members are under the influence when they are operating their respective vehicles.”
The sad news is that, this is true. The report also goes on to say that, Nonetheless, a third outlet that seems to be prominent among driver is religion. Religion is a resilience tool used by matatu and dala dala drivers to get through their very dangerous and unpredictable lives. Everything about their jobs is inconsistent and sporadic, however religion is a constant.
Instead of relying on religion and or drugs and alcohol to get us through each day; why not the people we claim;to have been appointed by God to lead us; do what God would want them do in the helm of His appointment. Its about time the government worked for the people–especially those who have been discriminated for ages.