Once again the issue of boda bodas is in the news, with the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) and the police engaging in running battles with the riders.

The uprooting of posters bearing messages that sought to deny the riders entry into the Central Business District (CBD) and the subsequent tear gassing by police, all left a bitter taste in the mouth, as there was neither victor nor vanquished on that fateful Friday.
For the record, the city authorities want the riders to operate at a ‘safe’ distance of about three kilometres from the heart of the city, while the riders are hell bent on carrying on their business anywhere and anyhow.
For some time now we have been living with this ‘menace’ that are the boda bodas, and a visit to any hospital in Uganda is testimony of how these ‘moving coffins’ have wreaked havoc on both the passengers and riders. The numbers are simply overwhelming!
Indeed, several people have lost lives, while many are without limbs courtesy of the boda bodas, putting a huge strain on the medical facilities and a big financial stress on the victims and their relatives.
Also, the boda boda riders have proved insolent, neglecting all traffic rules and some of them even engaging in serious crime, something that is unacceptable.
But while we condemn the boda boda riders, there is need to maintain a level of sobriety since not all of these riders are bad men. In fact the KCCA must put on a human face and acknowledge that some of these men fend for so many people, meaning that just throwing them out of the CBD may impact negatively on their families’ livelihood.
So, the city authority should find a lasting solution to this problem through sensitization, dialogue and an orderly transition and in this respect KCCA could start by gazetting a few strategic areas in the city, where the riders complete with helmets, embossed and numbered reflector jackets should be allowed to operate from.
This will be a four-way win-win situation for the KCCA, police, the riders and passengers.