- There has been a trend of attacks on riders by thugs who later changed locations to other towns to evade arrests.
- Others dismantle the motorcycles for spare parts.
Police want boda boda riders to install trackers on their motorcycles as part of efforts to tame rising cases of their robbery.
This follows a new trend where the riders are attacked and robbed of the motorcycles by thugs posing as pillions.
Nairobi police boss James Mugera said the trackers have come in handy on the motorcycles.
He cited an incident where one rider was on Monday night robbed of his motorcycle in Loresho area in the city.
The rider had picked up a pillion from Kangemi and headed to Lions Eye clinic in Loresho. On reaching at the site, the passenger removed a knife and ordered the rider to hand over his mobile phone, cash he had collected and the motorcycle.
The suspect rode off with the motorcycle as the owner rushed to a nearby police station to report.
And using a tracker, the motorcycle was traced to the CBD where the suspect was busy picking and dropping passengers.
He was arrested and was Tuesday expected in court to face robbery with violence charges.
Mugera said they have in the past tracked down and recovered stolen motorcycles that had tracking devices.
“They are like an insurance to the riders as they help in times of need. It is advisable for them to install the gadgets,” he said.
He added there has been a trend of attacks on riders by thugs who later changed locations to other towns to evade arrests.
Others dismantle the motorcycles for spare parts.
But Mugera advised that trackers can help in many ways.
The bodaboda industry is undergoing reforms with the ongoing registration of all operators, which started in March 2022.
The primary objective of issuance of Smart Driving Licences to qualified riders is to streamline the sub-sector and to promote road safety and security for the operators and users of their services.
To register, a rider must present himself/herself in person and have an original ID card, a copy of the KRA PIN and an active registered phone number.
The bodabodas have also been cited as being involbed in a number of crimes.
Unemployment, idleness, poverty, drug and substance abuse, non-regulation of the sector, greed, desire for quick money and weak law enforcement by agencies have been blamed for increased crime involving boda bodas.
Others include peer pressure, illiteracy, criminal minds, insecurity, poor infrastructure, high cost of living, corruption, ease of access to firearms through porous Kenyan border, drought and hunger, uncoordinated boda boda Saccos, political incitement, non-sharing of information with security agencies and tribalism.
Research conducted in 2018 established that some riders are involved in serious crimes such as robbery with violence and have caused accidents that have left many impaired and dead.
The ongoing reforms aim at establishment of a database of all the operators in Kenya through mandatory registration, refresher training and testing and making the industry a formal sector.