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Pwani Uni crash: Murkomen contradicts Vice Chancellor's statement on deadly crash

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen has addressed the preliminary probe on the accident that killed 18 people, after a Pwani University Bus collided with an oncoming matatu.

Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen speaking during a past media briefing at Harambee House

CS Murkomen spoke during an event in Malava, Kakamega constituency on Saturday, April 1, where he said that preliminary reports showed that the vehicle had not been serviced.

He expressed concern about the number of Kenyans who had died in road accidents, calling for tightening of road safety measures.

So many accidents happen because of the recklessness of drivers. We lost students from Pwani University and other Kenyans because preliminary investigation shows that the brakes failed, meaning that the bus was not serviced well,” Murkomen said.

He urged motorists to value people’s lives and not be reckless on the road, especially as the Easter holiday approaches.

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This comes after Pwani University Vice-Chancellor Professor Rajab Mohamed said it was surprising that the bus’ brakes failed, despite being new and having been serviced before the trip.

"It is important to clarify that we provide two drivers for all vehicles leaving for trips outside Kilifi County. These are seasoned drivers. The bus involved in the accident was a brand new bus, and we calibrated the speed governor in February.

Unfortunately, the new bus was involved in the accident, and the old one was not. I cannot say how the vehicle developed braking problems, but it was a tragic accident and a very unfortunate incident,” he told Nation.

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The Transport CS said that the government would increase vehicle inspection centres across the country, terming road accidents as a national calamity.

From the Ministry perspective, we have said we will increase car inspection centres. Currently, we have four in the whole country. We are going to privatise car inspection to get private investors who will open inspection centres across the country,” Murkomen said, adding that the regulations are ready.

The proposed motor vehicle inspection rules dictate that all privately owned vehicles that are over four years old must undergo a vehicle inspection test every two years. The proposal also imposes an inspection fee depending on the size of the vehicle and period, from Sh1,300 to Sh150,000.

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CS Murkomen also announced that the government would plant cameras on major highways and transport corridors to nab motorists who violate traffic laws.

He urged passengers to speak up whenever they are suspicious about drivers’ conduct, to prevent accidents, adding that passengers also have a responsibility to be ferried safely.

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