They say experience is the best teacher and an incident last week taught Police boss Joseph Boinnet just that.
While driving down to Meru for last week’s Madaraka day celebrations, the Inspector General of Police came face-to-face with bullying and impunity among miraa van drivers.
Boinnet’s motorcade had to give way to the speeding vans with their headlights on as they were recklessly driven, disregarding every rule on the book.
Irked by the impunity of the drivers, the IG ordered that the vans be impounded for disregarding traffic rules.
The consequences of Boinnet’s directive has been disastrous for miraa traders as traffic police along Meru-Embu-Nairobi and Nanyuki-Nyeri-Nairobi highways mounted a major crackdown and impounded several vans.
The incident highlights the agony of motorists in the region in the hands of the miraa transporters. The situation has been aggravated by the entry of Probox vehicles transporting muguka – another variety of miraa – from Embu, which just like the miraa vans from Meru are driven at breakneck speed and overtake dangerously.
Loaded with muguka- a lucrative variety of khat grown in Mbeere region of Embu County – the drivers display rare and equally dangerous manoeuvres as they step on the accelerator, chew the green leaves and gesture at other drivers to warn them as the car dashes across Embu town to join the Meru-Nairobi Highway.
The cars are seemingly immune to traffic laws since despite arriving at police roadblocks at breakneck speeds, traffic police just move a few steps from the road for their safety and wave them on.
In some instances, the drivers with their lights on just stop briefly, utter a few words or greet the police officers and off they zoom. While their driving antics may excite someone watching from a safe distance, these vehicles have left misery in their wake with families having lost their loved ones while survivors sustained crippling disabilities.
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