The opposition Democratic Party (DP) has challenged the Government’s position to maintain bodabodas on carrying only cargo and not passengers.
Addressing the nation about COVID-19 on Monday night, President Museveni said it is not yet safe for bodabodas to begin carrying passengers.
Bodabodas were in the first place stopped from carrying passengers on the pretext that both the rider and the passengers cannot observe a health rule of social distancing as one of the measures put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking to reporters at party headquarters in Kampala on Tuesday, the DP President Nobert Mao said that as DP, they have gotten into contact with bodaboda leadership to petition Government to lift the ban on carrying passengers.
“So we are in contact with leaders of bodabodas, we are going to meet with them. They should petition the Government. I am not a bodaboda rider, I don’t even own a bodaboda but I believe that bodabodas survive on carrying passengers. I have already spoken to the founder and co-director of safe boda. We are going to hold their hand to ensure that the restriction on bodabodas carrying passengers is lifted,” Mao said.
Mao added that the business of carrying goods and transporting food which is limited to bodabodas is not there anymore.
In the same vein, Mao challenged President Museveni’s directive maintaining curfew time at 7 am.
Museveni on Monday said that curfew time between 7 pm and 6:30 am was enforced to deter crime and social activities that could be illegally performed at night.
Mao advocated for the extension of curfew time from 7 pm to 10 pm.
“We still believe that the curfew of 7 pm is very unfriendly. It is the reason why we have a lot of traffic jam. We want to call upon the Government to ease the curfew and we still repeat our demand that curfew should start at 10 pm,” he said.
On the issue of testing truck drivers, Mao suggested that foreign truck drivers should not be tested at Uganda’s cost and the Government should designate quarantine stopovers for truck drivers passing through Uganda heading to other countries.
“We insist that foreigners should not be tested at our own cost. The position of DP is that we do not test truck drivers that are just passing through Uganda. We should only test those who are stopping in Uganda and stops should be like quarantine stops. Only drivers delivering goods to Uganda should be tested at our own cost. Otherwise, we are becoming donors to the Tanzanians, we are becoming donors to the Rwandans, we are becoming donors to South Sudanese and donors to Kenyans,” he added.