Several travelers have
taken advantage of the return of private vehicles on Ugandan roads to hike
lifts to their destinations. On Tuesday, private vehicles returned to the road
following the easing of the Covid19 lockdown.
In his last televised
Covid19 address, President, Yoweri Museveni lifted the suspension of private
means of transport.
He said the vehicles would be allowed to carry three people
including the driver so as to main social distance. All occupants are required
to wear masks to stop the spread of the covid19 virus.
URN visited various
city roads on Wednesday to see how the presidential directives are being
implemented. Our reporters found various travelers standing on various city
roads where they would stop private vehicles to negotiate for a lift.
One of such passengers
was Ronald Turinawe who was stranded at Busega stage together with his ill
father, George Kakuhikire.
The two were struggling to find transport to
Rukungiri district. Turinawe told URN that they were stuck because private
vehicles were asking for Shillings 500,000, which they couldn’t afford.
//Cue in: “Tunonya ntambula yakututwala…”
Cue out:… ogugenderamu babiri, tetulina.”//
Maureen Tuhaise, who was also on the same stage, was heading to Mbarara
district. She told URN that some of the motorists she had interfaced with were
asking for between Shillings 70,000 and 80,000.
//Cue In: “Ninza Mbarara…”
Cue Out: “…Entambura yaaba kali”//
Rajab Mukasa, a broker at Luqman Fuel station in Bwaise told URN that most private
vehicle are willing to take travelers for a small fee provided they have a mask
as directed by the president.
//Cue in: “Buli muntu
Cue out: “… dereeva si omu.”//
Daphne Ayebare from Kagoma told URN that she has been walking to work in Tula
each day since the lock down was announced. She however, said that she has now
stopped walking since private vehicles are willing to give her a ride for a
Wilberforce Mugenyi, a taxi driver who is currently working as a broker for
private vehicle owners, said they are defying the presidential guidelines because
of the biting poverty. He says they cannot keep home to watch their families
//Cue in: “Abavubuka abo abali…”
Cue out: “… omuntu e Busia.”//
According to the Presidential Directive, Public vehicles are expected to resume
operation at the beginning of June. However, they will only be allowed to carry
half of the capacity so as to enforce social distancing.