Following President Museveni’s advice to people to stop using public means of transport as a way of containing wide spread of COVID 19, some bus terminals have taken a decision to reduce the number of passengers on board in an effort to curb congestion.
ChimpReports spoke to the manager of Kisenyi Bus terminal Mr Saturday Muhwezi who said the number of passengers on board has been reduced from 67 to 57.
“A bus that has been taking 67 passengers now takes 57. We decided to forego 10 passengers as a measure of reducing concentration on the bus,” Muhwezi said.
This has however led to the hiking in transport costs.
“If transport to Mbarara was initially 15,000 shillings, it is now going to rise to 20,000 in order to get money for fuel.”
We spoke to Juliet Busingye who boarded Perfect Bus heading to Rukungiri district and she expressed concern over the hiking of transport costs.
“Some people are struggling to get money for transport. The transport charges have been increased. Previously, transport was 30,000 shillings but today it is 50,000,” she said.
Meanwhile, Muhwezi told this website that the number of passengers that was received in Kisenyi Bus park on Monday dropped. He attributed it to President Museveni’s pronouncement on Sunday in which he advised people to stop using public means of transport
The interstate buses that operate in Namayiba bus park which is under the management of Kisenyi Bus terminal, Muhwezi said halted operations and the park has been closed following a presidential directive shutting all the borders.
In Kisenyi bus terminal, the number of workers has also descended to contain congestion that could lead to wide spread of COVID 19. Workers have been put on hold for 30 days.
The decision to increase transport charges, Muhwezi said is not done by an individual but rather unanimously taken by the bus owners.
He added that the terminal has 11 entry points but 7 have been closed and only 4 are working to control free entry.
“We are left with only 4 entry points which we can manage well to ensure that whoever enters the terminal is hand washed. We also instructed bus managers to make sure that whichever bus is loading has a sanitizer at the door to sanitize whoever enters the bus.”
Although Coronavirus is seen as deadly world over, Muhwezi is optimistic that if presidential directives and instructions by the Ministry of Health are adhered to, COVID 19 will be defeated.
Ministry of Health has advised the population to ensure hand washing, avoid touching wet body parts such as nose, eyes and mouth, avoid overcrowding by keeping at least 2 meters from one another among others as some of the measures to contain the virus.