Boda boda riders in Kampala trained on traffic rules, road safety

Boda bodas in Kampala.

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | More than 600 boda boda riders from the Central and Nakawa division in Kampala have so far been trained on traffic rules and road safety. This is part of the ongoing campaign by the government to organize the boda boda industry.

Last week, the Ministry of Transport and Works, Kampala Capital City Authority-KCCA, and the Police Force partnered with Uganda Driving Licensing Agency to train the riders. The training is being conducted at Kiira Road Police Station grounds.

The riders are supposed to present their National Identity Cards and then pay 60,000 shillings for a health test and training. The riders are also subjected to sight, hearing, and blood sugar tests.

Brian Yiga, the lead trainer says riders are being trained on road safety and traffic regulations, basic principles of customer care, financial management, self-presentation to customers, and marketing.

Yiga says that emphasis has been put on traffic rules especially the use of junctions and the meaning of road signs.

At the end of the five days of training, the riders are subjected to a theory and practical exam to assess their understanding of concepts.

According to Yiga, riders who fail to score an average mark shall be subjected to another exam while those who have successfully concluded their training will be awarded certificates, and those without permits sent to the Ministry of Works to start the process of acquiring a permit. The government announced that permits shall be issued at a reduced fee, from 135,000 Shillings to 105,000 for a one-year permit and from 230,000 to135,000 Shillings for a three years permit.

Ibrahim Sekajja, a boda boda rider from Kampala Central Division says that for the 17 years he has worked as a boda boda rider, he had never undergone training and was ignorant about road safety and traffic regulations.

He says that government should extend such training to other road users many of whom are ignorant about the traffic rules.

Yasin Semujju, the spokesperson of the Boda Boda Industry in Uganda is optimistic that the training will bring sanity to the roads. Semujju says that he has attended training and gained knowledge that has distinguished him from many of his colleagues who do not seek any training.

Semujju wants the government to enforce training such that no rider is allowed to continue operating on the road without proof of prior training.

Siraje Mutyaba, the chairman of Boda Boda Industry Uganda has urged fellow riders to embrace the training program and be trained. Mutyaba is optimistic that such initiatives will help in organizing the industry.

In February, the State Minister for Kampala Capital City Kabuye Kyofatogabye issued guidelines for the registration of boda bodas. Some of the guidelines were registration with respective Resident City Commissioners-RCC although this didn’t kick-off. The riders are also supposed to get permits not later than July 1.

The training will also be conducted in Makindye Division and then other divisions of Kampala.

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