BUSINESSNews

Bolt responds to kidnapping incident involving their driver


Ride-hailing service Bolt has found itself on the wrong side of Kenyans, again. This is after reports emerged that one of its drivers was involved in the kidnap of Ciku Muiruri’s daughter and her friend.

According to the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI), the duo had requested a ride to Kilimani area via the Bolt app. They were picked up along Rhapta Road in Westland and upon commencing their trip the driver started threatening them before spreading off to a different destination.

Investigations into the abduction were immediately launched as DCI detectives trailed the suspects who operated between Nairobi, Thika, Ruiru and Witeithie in Kiambu County. The abductors had demanded a ransom of Sh250,000 from each of the two, in order to release them.

On Sunday, however, the victims, Twenty-six-year-old Erica Muiruri, and her friend Shanice Agose, 27, were rescued from a one-room house in Mangu and reunited with their parents.

In a statement, released on Tuesday, Bolt says it worked with the authorities to ensure the culprits are apprehended. 

‘’We are aware of the recent safety incident and deeply appreciate the local authorities’ efforts to ensure that the young girls were found and safely reunited with their families,” the statement read in part.

“We proactively collaborate with the authorities to provide pertinent information regarding this case that supported the conclusion of this investigation.” it further read. 

Customers Uproar

This latest development has raised an uproar among users and has seen Bolt trend on social media for the better part of Tuesday morning.  Users have shared their experiences with bolt drivers with some insisting the company is not doing enough to protect their customers. 

In a rejoinder Bolt says ‘’The safety of our riders and drivers remain our highest priority. This is why we strongly encourage all our drivers and drivers to report any incidents to our customer support team through our in-app support feature’’ 

Bolt further went ahead to advise riders to be cautious when requesting rides using the Bolt app. The company says some individuals may impersonate drivers registered on their app to engage in crime which it claims was the case in the kidnapping incident. 

“We strongly discourage the use of vehicles that do not match the details on the platform as this was one of the issues that led to this unfortunate incident,” Bolt said.

‘’Riders are encouraged to confirm that the driver and car registration details during their pickup match those on the app. We immediately block diverts that exhibit such behaviour.”

Tell us your thoughts, do you think Bolt is doing enough to protect its riders?

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Reginah Wamboi

Reginah is a seasoned Kenyan journalist with a keen interest in business and African startups. Send tips to info@techtrendske.co.ke or wamboi@techtrendske.co.ke

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