Only 4 digital cab-hailing firms licensed to operate in the country, NTSA

Transport industry regulator National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has published a list of digital cab-hailing firms allowed to operate in the country. The companies include Little Cab, Uber, Bolt and Yego- a new entrant from Rwanda.

The gazettement of the digital app-hailing companies came after customers raised concerns about their physical and financial safety. The regulator included the companies’ physical addresses, as a way of restoring public trust in the affected firms.

This exercise is part of ongoing attempts to harmonize the digital taxi industry and reduce friction between cab drivers, passengers and companies that run the apps.

“In carrying out its mandate and in line with requirements of the NTSA Transport Network Companies (TNC), Drivers and Passengers Rules 2022, the following companies are licensed to operate as Transport Network Companies,” the Authority stated.

In June this year, NTSA published the Transportation Network Companies (Drivers and Passengers) Rules 2022 and invited all current and prospective companies to submit their applications for licensing by October 17. It’s from this exercise that the company has finally produced the final list of five.

Digital cab-hailing services have been around for nearly a decade now but the industry has reeled from teething problems. Court battles and strikes from dissatisfied cab drivers have occasionally taken place, with stakeholders promising to streamline the industry.

Uber, one of the companies on this list, complied with an earlier directive to reduce commissions it charges to drivers from  25% to 18%, settling a long-running back and forth between the two parties.

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Simon W Nderitu

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