The Kenya Film Classification Board(KFCB) on Monday started an operation in Mombasa against public service vehicle operators that were airing or screening unrated content in their vehicles.
The clampdown spearheaded by KFCB’s boss Ezekiel Mutua, has targeted mainly Matatus, and seen at least four of them impounded in Bamburi and Sabasaba areas, with the board saying more will be impounded as the operation progresses.
“We are carrying the raids countrywide and I will personality be moving round the country to support our regional officers in the operations,” Mutua said during the operation in Bamburi.
“This week we shall be in different parts of the Coast and will stage the random checks in collaboration with officials from the Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government.”
The clampdown comes in the wake of KFCB’s concern over what it describes as PSVs airing unrated content that borders on obscenity to passengers who include school going children, threatening the society’s moral fabric.
In efforts to attract passengers and make a kill in the competitive matatu industry, several operators have resorted to invest in TV screens where they show music and films, as well as air some local popular radio stations whose content the KFCB says is not sanctioned.
Bonventure Kioko, KFCB’s Coast region coordinator said the clampdown was being carried out in a humane way.
“We are allowing those we find in contravention to rectify and comply at the scene; those who don’t we arrest and take to the nearest police station, and will have them arraigned in court,” Kioko, told Baraka FM.
In the operation, matatu operators with mounted screens are required to produce a relevant KFCB license allowing them to screen, or acquire one at the scene of the clampdown.
Mutua said the operation is meant to protect children ferried in the PSVs from exposure to indecent content.
“We appeal to members of the public to support us by reporting any cases of non-compliance through a text or WhatsApp messages detailing the vehicle registration on 0748 184 499,” he said on his twitter handle.
The crackdown saw passengers in Bamburi affected as Matatus opted to stay away from the roads.