A team of young Kenyans recruited as toll attendants along the Nairobi Expressway are protesting what they term as mistreatment by their employer.
Speaking out on behalf of his colleagues, one attendant disclosed to cnyakundi.com how security at their workplace has recently become greatly undermined, which has left them living at the mercy of rogue street dwellers.
Not deterred by the glaring light of day, most of the cash-strapped vandals are known to target items like copper wires from the dormant generators that transmit power to the stations.
At dusk, things get even worse.
With the footbridge deserted, armed thugs ready to pull the trigger roam freely.
The attendants have threatened to boycott the official launching of the Sh63bn project which was built under the public-private partnership model.
They have also vowed to abscond all upcoming nightshift until concerns over their security are acted upon.
A suggestion has also been made that for safety purposes, the attendants shall converge at the Operation and Management Centre (OMC) at City Cabanas no earlier than 6 am.
“Hello bro, there is an issue I want to share with you.
It’s about the mistreatment of us the toll attendants at Nairobi expressway.
Our security at Nairobi Expressway is between thick and thin.
Today I braved the morning chill, walked hurriedly on the lonely footpaths of the silent Kilimani at 4 am.
Trust me, I was alone on the road until I got to Ngong Road where I got a mat.
I was shaking and I swear, I was talking alone saying “It is only God who protects His people, may His will be done.”
We must come out in large numbers and boycott the launching of the highway if our concerns won’t be addressed.
If you’ve realized, they want us to come early. When we arrive at OMC, most of them are always asleep. We must talk with one voice. Let’s not wait until something happens that we act. Our security is very important.
They said it’s guaranteed. Security is not guaranteed.
Today while at the toll station at around 1:30 pm, two street boys hid behind a generator at Southern Bypass, Exit A.
They were salivating for a copper wire used for transmissions in the station.
They wanted to cut the wire and go with it since it’s not passing electric currents.
We MUST refuse to attend night shifts also when the job starts until our security is guaranteed.
It’s only that amongst us we have traitors, I’d suggest we all arrive in OMC at 6 am to be safe.
The footbridge is always deserted and until now, reports hold it that one of us was chased by armed thugs.
When you tell a foreigner this, they’ll say you’re lying.
We must fight for our security,” our source writes.
The workers have also raised an issue over the meagre amount of pay they have been receiving for their services.
The contractor identified as “Moja Expressway Company” offers them a basic salary of Sh17,325 per month, with a house allowance equivalent to 20% of the basic salary.
Employees have also inveighed a culture of discrimination that is slowly invading the workplace.
Recently, a pregnant lady is reported to have been unfairly dismissed on the grounds that she could no longer rightfully perform her duties.
Earlier in the week, HR had requested any of the workers with any special conditions to feel free to request more favourable shifts based on personal circumstances.
The lady, sensing reprieve, quickly forwarded her name.
But little did she know that they had requested the details so they could fish out and do away with victims like herself.
Interestingly, whispers on the ground suggest that the father of the child could be potentially one of the senior management officials known to sexually misuse ladies working under the dubious firm.
“Look at what they are paying graduates surely.
Again there is a pregnant lady who was terminated on grounds that she is not performing yet the HR had come and asked us if any one of us is having some conditions that require them to get a favouring shift since the road will be in operation for 24hrs.
Kumbe they wanted to get their details so that they can be dealt away with.
Again among the management, there are sexual predators who are misusing our ladies.
They will be an official launch of the road on 4th April 2022 by Uhunye but the toll collector are planning to boycott the launch since the management of Nairobi Expressway under Moja Expressway if hecan’t listen to us too,” the angry Kenyan adds.
The expressway project is inching closer to completion with most of the infrastructure already installed.
It will have 11 interchanges and 27 toll stations dotted along different sections of the elevated highway.
The tickets for the road will be obtained at the toll stations. Motorists will then be expected to keep the same ticket which will be scanned before exiting the road.
Each toll station will also have a toll attendant who will guide the motorists on the way forward once it is opened for the public.
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