Uber drivers flatly reject new price increase, call for another strike

In a message send to their drivers, the operator has set the base fare at Sh100 and will now charge Sh42 for every kilometre as well as Sh3 for every minute a customer's pick up is active.

 

Commuters within Nairobi will from today (Thursday) pay a minimum Sh300 fare for trips within the city.

"We have always promised to closely monitor driver-partner’s economics; keeping cognisant of how inflation and fuel prices can affect drivers using our app. We continue to stand by that promise because Uber succeeds when our partners succeed."  a statement  sent by Uber read in part.

However Uber driver have turned down the new price hike and demanded instead the San Franscisco based company revert back to their original fares of Sh60/km and Sh4 per minute, pending review of fares by a committee that is to be formed.

A secretary to the digital association said Uber raised the fares as a tactic to water down the strike.

"I am sorry to disappoint you all, inside sources just confirmed the price increase is a tactic to water down the strike," the secretary said.

As a result Uber drivers went offline on Thursday and began a strike to demand higher rates.

Passengers trying to access the service found the message "0 hours online and 0 trip".

The drivers have warned colleagues who continue working of attacks and some areas in the city would be no-go zones.

"We had a very successful meeting [on] Thursday and Friday demos. There will be a team in Kitengela near the [boda boda] stage," a driver only known as Apollo wrote to colleagues according to a local daily.

"Don't dare [go to] Gateway Mall because the worst team will be waiting for the traitors both at the service lanes and the highway."

While another driver known as James Jaymoh cautioned those planning to hide during the strikes.

"Thursday and Friday will [see] the mother of all demos...take caution...we have sealed all the loopholes," he said.

He cautioned those who will not participate in the strike to instead stay at home.

"Please, if you won't be with the others, park and stay at home. We will no longer take any liability regarding attacks or damages. Please preach the word to everyone...whoever have ears should hear," he added.

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