GICUMBI – Road accidents have drastically reduced in Gicumbi district following the district’s decision to ban cyclists from operating in the town center and on tarmac highways, police said.
The ban was put in place during a recent district security meeting chaired by Mayor Bonane Nyangezi.
Speaking to The New Times, the District Police commander, Supt. Jean de Dieu Gashiramanga, said no fatal accident has been reported ever since the ban was announced.
“A total of 33 accidents in which 22 people died were recorded between 2008 and August 2009. But the number of accidents has reduced to only four with no deaths reported between September and October 2009,” Gashiramanga said.
“Bicycles have no insurance to operate on tarmac roads and in busy urban centers. Cyclists have been advised to carry out their businesses on feeder roads where traffic is minimal.”
However, the ban has drawn criticism from cyclists ever since it was enforced.
Alex Nduwayezu, one of the cyclists said: “This business has helped most of us to earn a living and maintain our families. There are no customers on feeder roads.”
The district vice Mayor for Social Affairs, Eugénie Uwamahoro advised the affected youth to take up other alternative jobs instead of complaining.
“The youth should look for alternative means of earning a living by forming agriculture and livestock farming cooperatives in the villages,” said Uwamahoro.