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Fares go up by 30 per cent across the country

Commuters and passengers who use Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) will now have to dig deeper to cope with the high cost of fuel that has affected matatu fares.

Matatu Owners Association (MOH) Chairman Albert Karakacha on Tuesday announced a 30 per cent increment  in fares.

Mr Karakacha said the changes took effect on Monday following the announcement of increased fuel prices by the Energy and Petroleum Regulatory Authority (EPRA).

The association said while it was aware of the global economic crisis that had affected many sectors, operators had not been left out as the cost of fuel and spare parts had skyrocketed.

“With effect from July 5, passengers can expect a moderate increase of 10-30 per cent on the current fares charged on various routes, including city services and long-distance trips,” Mr Karakacha said.

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The chairman cited that the Finance Act, 2023, which was recently assented to by President William Ruto, has affected the prices of various items, hence the need to adjust the fares.

He said the decision was arrived at after extensive consultation with various stakeholders, adding that any other changes in fuel prices at the pump will also affect motorists.

“How we arrived at 30 per cent, we consulted our members across the country and if you go deeper, spare parts have gone up, loans have gone up by 5 per cent and tyres have gone up,” Mr Karakacha said.

While the 2023 Finance Bill has been challenged in court, matatu operators said they could not sit and wait for the court’s decision as the fuel regulator had already made changes at the pump.

“If you go to all the petrol stations as we talk right now, the fuel was increased on Friday and we’ve been waiting from Friday up to yesterday and there was nothing happening, that is why we decided to increase the fare,” Mr Karakacha said.

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In the changes, matatus operating from Nairobi CBD to Eastland and all the routes within the country will pay between Sh10 to Sh30 more from the current fare.

PSVs operating between Nairobi to Kajiado, Machakos, Murang’a, and Kiambu will see an increase of Sh20 to Sh50.

The passengers traveling to Nyanza region from Nairobi will have to pay between Sh100 to Sh200 more, same to passengers traveling to Rift Valley region.

If you are planning to travel to the Central region, you will have to pay Sh150 more, while those traveling to Meru, Embu and Isiolo will cost you between Sh100 and Sh150 more.

Also, passengers travelling from Nairobi to Western region and back will pay between Sh200 and Sh300 more.

The association has also urged the government to consider subsidising fuel prices for PSV operators and alleviate the burden on both operators and passengers.

According to fuel regulator, the new 16 per cent Value-Added Tax (VAT) on petroleum which was effected following the passing of the Finance Act, 2023.

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