RURA introduces new reforms in Kigali public transport system

RURA's Director General, Patrick Nyirishema speaks at the press conference where the utility body announced the City of Kigali road map. /Julius Bizimungu.

Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Authority (RURA) has announced new reforms that will bring efficiency in public transport in the city of Kigali.

The reforms are contained in the new roadmap for public transport in the city of Kigali, which runs from 2020 to 2025, the utility regulator told a press conference on Thursday.

Patrick Nyirishema, the Director-General of RURA, said the aim is to have a well planned and scheduled transport in the city.

"We are starting public transport generation 2. The idea is to address the challenges we saw in the first generation," he said.

The new changes include selecting new public transport operators, Nyirishema said.

“By January next year, new companies will have been selected," he added.

Under the reforms, RURA also seeks to “decongest” the public transport sector by improving efficiency and coordination of routes.

Passengers have in the past also raised concerns of poor services offered by transport companies and the lack of timely information on routes.

Now, RURA says it will improve route planning and service contracts, introduce scheduled service, dedicated lanes and better vehicle mix.

Engineer Asaba Katabarwa, who's in Charge of Transport at RURA, said it was important to have well planned transport system given the rise of the city population.

"The population of the city is set to increase to 3.8 million by 2050. To be able to accommodate this rising population, we need to have well planned transport," he noted. 

Generally, RURA targets go make Kigali a Transit oriented city, as well as establish complete transport system and create a sustainable transport network. 

The new plan will be implemented starting May next year.

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