Matatu man Jamal to run for Nairobi governor

In Summary
  • He aims to improve transport and create jobs
  • As governor, he will raise parking fees and make all matatus efficient
Jamal Roho Safi
Jamal Roho Safi
Image: Courtesy

Nairobi Matatu Operators chairman Jamal Ibrahim, popularly known as Jamal Roho Safi is eyeing the Nairobi governorship.

Speaking to Word Is, Jamal said he aims to improve transport and create jobs.

Jamal has been in the matatu industry for 11 years and has served as the association's chairman for five years.

"There is a big problem in the transport department but since I have already understood the problems people face, I will be in a better position to govern the city," he said.

He said the capital city needs a good manager who understands what most people go through.

"This city cannot be managed by an old person. I am 30 years and as a youth, I interact with most of them on a daily basis and I understand what they go through before they earn a living."

He also intends to tackle the water and healthcare challenges. 

"We have old people who only sit in their offices and rarely understand what is happening on the ground," Jamal said.

As governor, he will raise parking fees and make all matatus efficient.

"This will decongest the city. The city is congested by personal cars. For people to use public vehicles, they must be reliable and clean."

Jamal said he has been in communication with former Governor Mike Sonko who has promised to support him. Jamal started out as a tout and later bought a used matatu that operated on the Nairobi-South C route.

"I continued working as a tout on a different matatu and gave my vehicle to a team that would use it and give me money at the end of the day," he said in a past interview.

Away from the matatu industry, Jamal has also invested in online businesses and technology.