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60 taxis impounded over lack of route charts

FILE PHOTO: Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson Patrick Onyango confirmed report

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | More than 60 taxis were impounded in Kampala on Thursday over lack of route charts. The drivers were found loading passengers at gazetted and non-gazetted parks yet they had not registered with Kampala Capital City Authority –KCCA and the Ministry of Works to secure route charts.

As part of the plans to improve public transport in Kampala, the city authority started registering all commuter taxi’s that operate in the city. They were required to fill a registration form detailing their name, National Identity Card Number and the KCCA City Operator Identification Number and attach a copy of the vehicle logbook or a sales agreement, a copy of the driver’s licence, proof of PSV tax payments and details of the taxi owner.

But as they returned to the roads after more than two months, some of the drivers were found carrying passengers without proof of registration. Such taxis were stopped and impounded. “We ordered drivers to pick them after securing route charts,” a senior police officer said.

Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson Patrick Onyango said some taxis had been impounded but could not confirm the actual number. He however said impounded taxis had been parked at various police stations in the Kampala metropolitan area.

Also, KCCA has gazetted only eight stages in Kampala including the Old Taxi Park, New Park, Kisenyi, Namayiba, Namirembe, Nateete, Usafi and Nakawa park. The authority has identified stops where passengers can board or disembark from the taxis. Taxi and bus drivers have been banned from loading on unauthorised stages.

Drivers whose vehicles were impounded cried out to KCCA and works ministry asking to be allowed to operate as they collect the money needed to meet some of the requirements such as renewing permits and transfer of vehicle ownership.

Med Lwanyaga, a driver at Kajjansi stage in Usafi market said he is suffering with three children after their mother abandoned them.

Stephen Hakiri said he was excited when President Yoweri Museveni announced that he had allowed public transport to resume operations. But his excitement was short-lived as KCCA and works ministry could not allow him to operate.

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