RE: “Here’s how we can phase out taxi-motos” (The New Times, September 20).
There is always a mistake of start thinking of “phasing out” or banning something without or before coming up with any alternative plan. The increased number of this “highly dangerous form of transport” is a result of an increased number of users disappointed by the lack of or failure of other forms of public transport, and don’t have any other choice but take the risk.
The only way of phasing out taxi-motos without creating side effects is to do the following:
1. Increasing the capacities (bring on more buses or more companies);
2. Enforcing tight buses schedule – monitoring the enforcement and regularly assessing the satisfaction of users and quickly address their complaints (RURA should also be concerned of the concerns of users in the same way it is concerned about these companies’ interest; public interests should prevail over private interest in this);
3. Ensure that all corners of the city where public transport is not reaching presently and the only option people have is taxi-moto transport are also considered in any new plan.
4. As roads networks are increasing in the city, keep some lines only reserved for public transport, especially during morning and evening busy hours when people go to or from work, to reduce the effect of traffic jams.
5. I also support the idea of ensuring that those leaving taxi-moto business get alternative job opportunities (eg TVET-related occupations with some incentives).
Briefly, first put alternative and more convenient (for users) solutions in place before phasing out or banning any existing mechanism.