It was appalling to the extreme watching the video on the internet of a boda boda mob sexually assaulting a hapless young woman motorist on Professor Wangari Maathai Road in Nairobi.
It was President Mwai Kibaki who introduced friendly economic measures to facilitate commercial two-wheeled public transport in the country. His intentions were pure: To uplift the lives of hordes of idle youth scheming criminal activities.
Unfortunately, this noble initiative has since been hijacked by vicious criminal elements, who engage in all manner of crime, including cold-blooded murder, with impunity. We have heard of cases where gangs of boda boda riders have set fire to buses and matatus, private vehicles and even police vehicles following minor traffic incidents.
As the government slumbers and politicians (mis)use the riders as fodder for their convoys, be warned: The fraternity is evidently and gradually evolving into a militia, and a dangerous one which indications show will one day face law and order head-on.
There are very many vicious criminals masquerading as honest boda boda riders and the least the government should do is rein in this business with very strict controls and checks.
Sammy Ng’ang’a, Nairobi
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The viral video of a female motorist being harassed by unruly boda boda riders on a Nairobi road is shameful. It has opened a can of worms on just how dangerous some of these riders are.
Yes, some riders do their work diligently. But we must condemn those whose behaviour is unbecoming. Most of the riders flout traffic rules, ride while intoxicated, don’t wear safety gear and have subjected many innocent passengers to death or injury.
It’s about time the government addressed this ticking time bomb. These riders need proper training and their licences scrutinised to weed out the unqualified ones from the roads.
Kevin Oketch, Siaya
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That video has nothing to do with women. Or with the victim being female. These boda boda guys strip all and sundry!
It’s got everything to do with the deeply entrenched class segregation in the country. Poor people think they are poor because the rich ‘stole’ all their opportunities. They, therefore, vent on the supposedly ‘rich’.
You get into a small entanglement with one on the road, they surround your car in their numbers and mob, mug and beat you up. Anybody who has had a brush with the riders knows this.
Moses Oduwa, Homa Bay
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I empathise with the woman motorist accosted by boda boda riders. Society failed her. That level of moral collapse is shocking in modern times. Disgraceful!
Kamau Gathuthi, Nairobi