An Uber driver, who has been accused of “trying to attack” musician Crystal Asige of the now-popular “Extravaganza” song says a “misunderstanding” between him and the artiste arose from his lack of knowledge that Asige is visually impaired.
Asige took to Twitter early Friday to narrate her experience riding in Divon Maigua’s car of registration plate number KCU 317X.
“WARNING: Nissan KCU317X. This Uber driver tried to attack me last night at the end of my trip on the way home from the studio at midnight: DIVON KIMONDO MAIGUA 0721403854. Do not use this driver, or enter this car — to all women, especially with a disability,” wrote Asige on Twitter in a post which has attracted over 930 retweets.
EDAILY reached the accused, Maigua, for comment and below is his side of the story:
“I picked the customer [Asige] from Jacaranda Avenue in Lavington, Nairobi on Thursday evening. Her destination was Muringa Road in Kilimani. After she requested the ride, I saw her being brought to the car by another person.
“She talked briefly with the person and got into the car and asked me to start the ride, which I did.
“As we approached her destination, I told her to guide me to the exact location she was going.
“She said on the route we were at the time, I would drive down, and see a black gate. And true, I saw the gate. She asked me to hoot so that it could be opened, a request I heeded.
“However, nearly 10 minutes later, no one came to open the gate.
“Given I was at work, I asked her if I could end the trip in preparation to receive another request.
“She said I shouldn’t until I ensured she was safely home.
“As I was wondering what to do, I saw a security guard manning a nearby gate. I approached, and asked if he could come to the car and identify the customer.
“When I opened the door for him to have a look at her, he immediately said he knew her as one of the occupants in the apartments he was manning.
“He told me that the lady is visually-impaired and that was why she had asked to be taken to her door step.
“God knows, I hadn’t known that fact until then. Had I known, I swear, I wouldn’t have asked her to step out of the car alone.
“It was at that point that I ended the trip, and offered to drive her into the compound to whichever point she wanted me to take her.
“She, however, refused my offer, and claimed I mistreated her. She, instead, asked the watchman to walk her in. She had already paid the fare (Ksh150) via M-Pesa.
“I felt so bad about myself; had I been keener, I would have noticed that she was visually impaired. Unfortunately, I overlooked that need, something that I am humbly sorry for.
“On Friday, I woke up to social media news that my name had been dragged into accusations that I attacked the customer. No, I did not do that, and CCTV footage at the apartments can prove me right. I urge the police handling the case to have a look at those CCTV recordings in order to establish the truth. Never in my life have I ever beaten up a woman. And, if indeed I beat her up, or even tried to beat her up, the watchman would have prevented me from doing that.
“She filed a report at a Kilimani police post, and on Friday morning, I went to record my version of the story.
“I hope the truth comes out; I am just a mere driver, trying to survive these hard economic times, and I wouldn’t want to lose my job.”
Asige says she reported the alleged mistreatment to Uber, who have taken up the matter.
“Thank you everyone. I reported this to Uber and they escalated it immediately. Someone from their London office phoned me within minutes to take my statement. I am now waiting for their feedback,” said Asige on Twitter Friday.