Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) will commence with production of buses as early as 2021 to boost Uganda’s transport system, an official has revealed.
“We are destined to start with the production of buses because this is much more needed in the easing of transport for our people,” said KMC Chief Executive Officer, Paul Isaac Musasizi on Tuesday.
The Ministry of Works and Transport (MoWT) intends to introduce a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system in the Greater Kampala Metropolitan Area (GKMA) to meet the growing demand for mobility.
The population of Greater Kampala is expected to grow from 3 million to approximately 5 million in 2022 and to at least 10 million in 2040.
This, officials say, underlines the need for a high capacity transport system to offer an alternative for minibus and private car transport.
Musasizi spoke at Kiira Motors Vehicle Production Facilities in Jinja during a visit of Makerere University Council members led by their chairperson, Lorna Magara.
He led the Council on a tour of facilities which included the Main access road, and the power line, both sponsored by Makerere University Council.
Musasizi said the production facilities are hosted on a 100-acre piece of land of which the Assembly plant occupies 1.5 acres, expected to expand to 5.3 acres in total upon completion of the project.
Musasizi further revealed that production will start in 2021 with 5,000 vehicles annually and when the total facility is completed, a production of 150,000 vehicles per year is expected.
On the choice of location for the plant, Musasizi said Jinja was chosen due to its proximity to the source of hydroelectric power, as well as its location along the northern corridor which makes it easy to import raw materials and export products to the market.
The Executive Chairman Kiira Motors Corporation, Prof. Sandy Stevens Tickodri explained said the Kiira Vehicle project was hatched by Makerere University lecturers and students at the College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT), and thanked Council and Management for their innumerable support that has enabled the project to construct the production facilities.
Makerere Vice Chancellor Professor Barnabas Nawangwe reechoed the importance of building synergies and good cooperation between Council, Management and Government, that has realized the establishment of a huge facility that was started as a research project by Makerere University lecturers and students.
Magara said the teaming up of Makerere students and researchers has demonstrated the ability to transform classroom knowledge into products that can provide solutions to the country’s needs.