Taxi hailing apps operating in Kenya such as Uber and Bolt have been ordered to obtain valid operating licenses from the Ministry of Transport in order to continue operations in the country.
The new rules, which were introduced on Tuesday by Transport Cabinet Secretary (CS) James Macharia, will see international firms part with Ksh. 500, 000 to obtain the authority’s licence. Drivers on other hand will spend Ksh.500 to apply and renew their digital hauling badges.
Mr. Macharia consequently revealed that the operating licenses will only be available to taxi hailing providers who have a valid binding agreement between the operator and the vehicle owner. Persons applying for the licence must similarly have a tax compliance certificate from the Kenya Revenue Authority and a certificate of registration as a body corporate. Owners of the firms must also ensure that all vehicles under the digital hailing service platform have valid insurance covers.
“A digital hailing service operator must ensure that any vehicle whose digital hailing licence is suspended or revoked by the authority, cannot access the digital hailing platform during the period of suspension or revocation upon communication from the authority,” the Transport CS said in a statement.
The new rules equally decree that drivers operating on the various platforms present have to present their vehicles’s details and personal information to riders before beginning any trips. Automobile details that must be presented to riders include the vehicle’s make, colour and registration. Drivers must equally present their names, photo and estimated fare rates to riders before commencing a new trip.
Drivers have also been instructed to work for only 8 hours a day. Failure to do this will see the drivers losing their licenses entirely. On commission limitation, the new rules dictate that digital hailing service operator should not charge a commission of more than 15 per cent per trip or levy charges above the commission.
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