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Cyclists' association backs police in bodaboda crackdown

By Lawrence Mulondo, Juliet Waiswa, Cecilia Okoth

Added 2nd July 2016 09:07 PM

A total of 119 bodabodas have been impounded at the Jinja Road, Clock Tower and Old Kampala traffic lights

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A total of 119 bodabodas have been impounded at the Jinja Road, Clock Tower and Old Kampala traffic lights

Managers of city motorcycle associations have backed the on-going crackdown on motorcycles locally known as bodabodas saying for a long time, they have been grappling with the issue of how to expel masquerading cyclists who they say are the main reason for indiscipline in the city.

Antanas Kafeero who heads the Kampala Central Bodaboda 2010 Motorcyclists association told New Vision that some criminals disguise themselves as bodaboda cyclists yet they purposely aim at robbing people's property or even killing them, thus tarnishing the name of the bodaboda industry.

"All criminals are now using bodabodas to carry out their shoddy motives and therefore police crackdown on them is simply saving us," He said.

Kafeero said that since the exercise begun, very few of the bodabodas which were impounded belonged to his association.

Those, whose motorcycles were impounded either, lacked log books, permits, insurance or passenger service vehicle license.

Kafeero however said that the chairmen of the different divisions were still engaging police, requesting them to allow the cyclists belonging to known associations to get provisional permits in the interim. A provisional permit costs sh25, 000 and actual permits cost sh250,000, a fee some cyclists claimed is on the high side.

"Police's move is welcome. We the leaders had agreed that a mechanism be put in place to control cyclists to enable them abide by the rules and regulations," Joseph Nsinitaazi the chairman Makindye division said.

Kiviri Kanyike, the chairman Kampala Central Metropolitan bodaboda cyclists (a different association from the one above) however said despite the several talks they have had with the cyclists, more sensitisation is needed.

"We appreciate police's effort but we kindly request that they engage us on when and how the operations are going to be carried out," he said.

Vincent Sebanyinga a cyclist who had just got back his motorcycle at Wandegeya Police Station admitted that he did not go through the professional process to learn how to ride a motorcycle.

His motorcycle was impounded because he did not possess a PSV license and a permit.  

He appealed to government to set up schools that equip cyclists with skills in riding and traffic regulations just like driving schools that teach people how to drive.

By midday, a total of 119 bodabodas had been impounded at the Jinja Road, Clock Tower and Old Kampala traffic lights.

Norman Musinga the Kampala Metropolitan Traffic Commander said a report is being compiled to determine the total number of motorcycles impounded and amount of money collected in fines.

The crackdown which begun on Friday last week has so far seen 5000 motorcycles being impounded for various defaults.

The traffic Police have in the past week been mounting operations on major roads leading into Kampala city and impounded non-compliant bodabodas in the early morning rush hour and in the evening.

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