London says Uber not ‘fit and proper’ for passengers

London says Uber not ‘fit and proper’ for passengers

 Uber has clashed with traditional taxi-drivers around the world.

Uber drivers in Kenya must be a worried lot with news that London has rejected the company’s licence allegedly for being not proper and fit.Read Also:Interesting stories on twitter as Raila, Kalonzo security withdrawn

As reported by the Washington Post:  “London’s municipal transport authority took commuters by surprise Friday when it rejected Uber’s application for a new license to operate in the sprawling megalopolis, ruling that the ride-hailing giant is not a “fit and proper” private car-hire operator.”

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Uber’s license expires at the end of September, but the company has 21 days to appeal and can continue to operate until there is another ruling. See Also:We promises Transparent and Accountable Poll-IEBC

Just like Uber’s Kenyan experience, the ubiquitous car service has experienced explosive growth in dense and sprawling London, where an estimated 40,000 Uber drivers prowl the streets waiting for hails from the 3.5 million residents who have downloaded the app.

“Uber is especially popular because its rates are often far below London’s famous black cabs. A ride from Heathrow Airport to the city might cost more than $100 in a black cab but only $50 in an Uber vehicle,” reports the Washington Post:

The same is true for Kenya where other taxi drivers have been complaining of a disrupted market since Uber entered the market.

In London, Uber drivers have been accused of rape and the company has been accused of failing to report serious crime meted on Uber passengers.How Supreme Court ICT ignorance created legal quandary, circuitous litigations-Gakuru

“Transport for London, the governing authority, said it rejected the application to renew the license because “Uber’s approach and conduct demonstrate a lack of corporate responsibility,” including not reporting serious criminal offenses and not obtaining medical certificates and background checks for the drivers,” Reads the Washington Post in part.

According to Tom Elvidge, general manager of Uber in London,  the rejection shows the world that, “far from being open, London is closed to innovative companies.”


“To defend the livelihoods of all those drivers, and the consumer choice of millions of Londoners who use our app, we intend to immediately challenge this in the courts,” Elvidge vowed.

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How Uber works

To use the app, one must download it onto a mobile phone. It works on both iOS, Android and Windows phones.

Since Uber does not own any vehicles, drivers or car owners must  register after fulfilling some conditions.

Perhaps what makes Uber attractive to many users is the background check and measures taken to ensure customers do not fall in wrong hands.

Among the required documents include copy of an ID, driver’s license, Certificate of Good Conduct, PSV license, PSV insurance, driver’s and car owner’s tax pin, a logbook to ensure that the car is not stole and a vehicle inspection report.Safaricom boss Bob Collymore named best CEO in Africa

“Our safety features are the gold standard: on requesting a car, you see the driver’s photo, name and car licence plate. You are also able to share your route with your friends and family so they know exactly where you are and when you are arriving. Our background and vehicle checks in Nairobi exceed the local standard. We require certification for tax purposes; insurance; a vehicle inspection report; appropriate driving license and police clearance. Also See:

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In a past interview Uber Operations Manger in Nairobi, Kagure Wamunyu, said in 2014 the company helped make 1 million trips happen across sub Saharan Africa.

According to Wamunyu, the company conducts weekly checks to ascertain which documents are almost expiring. Drivers are then alerted to update documents in good time or else be removed from the system.

“In Nairobi we have partnered with a significant number of drivers and provided them with the tools to build their own small businesses. Our mission is to provide a safe and reliable transport option to riders and greater economic opportunity to drivers,” says Wamunyu.The Journey Has Just Began- Hephziba,73