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Maandamano Wednesday: Kenyans brace for 3 demonstrations countrywide

Kenyans are bracing for another round of countrywide demonstrations on Wednesday, July 12 with the potential for major disruptions and a greater impact compared to previous demonstrations.

The day is expected to witness not one, but three protests across different sectors.

Those who have given notices to hold demos include Azimio la Umoja – One Kenya Coalition, Public Service Vehicles (PSVs) and the Taxi Association of Kenya over the soaring cost of living and controversial tax hikes contained in the Finance Act.

On June 21, PSVs issued a 21-day strike notice in response to the mandatory re-testing exercise conducted by the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA).

With the deadline set to lapse on Wednesday, July 12, PSV operators, supported by long-distance drivers and boda boda operators, said the re-testing is punitive and aimed at frustrating motorists.

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“The association calls for constructive dialogue between the Ministry of Transport, the NTSA, and stakeholders to address concerns and find mutually beneficial solutions that prioritize safety while supporting driver’s well-being,” reads a statement by the Long-Distance Drivers and Conductors Association (LODDCA).

On the other hand, the taxi-hailing apps have also announced a nationwide strike, raising concerns over insecurity, escalating fuel prices and pay rates set by digital companies.

The Taxi Association of Kenya also wants the government to address the cost of fuel, pay rates, traffic police intimidation and insecurity.

Taxi-hailing drivers have pledged to keep their cars off the road during the strike, emphasizing that the action will continue until their demands are met by the government.

All taxi-hailing drivers have also been ordered to keep their cars off the road during the strike. The association said that the strike would continue until their demands were met by the government.

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Last week, Azimio leaders announced another round of countrywide demonstrations on Wednesday, July 12. They said that in Nairobi, the demos will be preceded by a rally at Kamkunji grounds.

“And next week, on Wednesday, July 12, we will have more serious demonstrations across the country,” National Assembly Minority Leader Opiyo Wandayi said following the Saba Saba demos of last week.

On Tuesday, Azimio la Umoja leader Raila Odinga confirmed Wednesday’s demonstration saying that they will converge at Kamukunji grounds for their consultative meeting.

Mr Odinga said Kenyans will return to the streets not just in Nairobi but across the country on Wednesday to exercise their democratic rights.

The opposition leader’s remarks, including the push to collect 15 million signatures, have drawn criticism from Kenya Kwanza leaders, who argue that the signatures cannot remove President William Ruto from office and perceive it as an attempt to overthrow the government.

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