Matatu Owners Association Coast chapter has refuted claims from Mombasa County government that matatus plying Mombasa roads are full of bedbugs.
MOA Coast regional coordinator Salim Mbarack Salim said that all matatus operating within Mombasa were clean and don’t harbour bedbugs as claimed by the county government.
Mombasa County health Executive member Hazel Koitaba said that matatus plying Mombasa county roads must undergo fumigation to tame the invasion of bedbugs, cockroaches and lice.
She said fumigation was a must and all matatus should undergo the exercise three times a month to tame the health threatening situation for passengers.
Koitaba said that the invasion had caused disturbance to passengers and all players in the sector must adhere to the new order.
However, MOA Coast region coordinator Salim Mbarak Salim denied the claims saying matatus were cleaned twice a day and would not harbour bedbugs.
“Bedbugs are transferred from one point to another by people and it’s impossible for us to disinfect our passengers before they board matatus,” he noted.
Mbarak said MOA has not received complaints from the public about the ‘purported’ invasion of bedbugs, cockroaches and lice in matatus.
“This could be a clear plan for the county government to fleece us more money despite paying exorbitant operating fees to the county,” he added.
He said they were overburdened with Ksh. 7,900 monthly insurance charges, ksh. 2,000 county stickers, expensive spare parts and extra fumigation costs is overburdening the public transport sector.
The county Health Chief Officer Aisha Abubakar said the county will hold a meeting with MOA for further deliberations on the fumigation move.