Kampala City is at the verge of getting a new transport system after the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) proposal is approved.
The chairperson of Tondeka Metro Mr Peter Kimbowa, a local transport company, yesterday said they plan to introduce about 980 buses in March 2020, as an initiative to reduce traffic jam.
Mr Kimbowa added that the buses will initially ply Kampala- Mukono route on Jinja road; Kampala-Nsangi on Masaka Road, Kampala-Buloba on Mityana Road, Kampala-Wakiso on Hoima Road, Kampala-Matugga on Bombo Road; Kampala-Entebbe and Kampala-Ggaba.
“We have met with members of various committees and board to conclude the strategy and operations of this new initiative. This is an initiative to improve transport system in the city. We are addressing the problem of heavy traffic in the city and we are losing close to $800m (about Shs3 trillion) every year in traffic jams,” Mr Kimbowa said.
Addressing the media in Kampala yesterday, Mr Kimbowa said the 980 buses are part of the 3,000 buses expected in the country under the $200m (about Shs737.9b) project.
The chairperson of Kampala Operational Taxi Stages Association, Mr Yasin Ssematimba, said although the buses will affect taxi operations, it is time for Ugandans to accept the global change.
Mr Ssematimba asked the bus firm to employ taxi operators working in the city centre since more than 6,000 taxis and 10,000 operators will be affected with this initiative.
“Many opportunities will be availed; repairing buses, managing buses, terminals, routes. Taxi operators should be employed since this is their area of knowledge and practice.”
Mr Ssematimba explained that the project will improve the mode of payment where electronic cards will be used.
The KCCA spokesperson, Mr Peter Kaujju, said Tondeka Metro bid is one of the many proposals that are being discussed to improve transport in the city but has not yet been endorsed.
Mr Kaujju said there are existing buses that were given approval and are operating though with some operational challenges frustrating them to reduce traffic jam in the city.