Last Updated on: 9th May 2023, 12:50 pm
Gulu, May 9, 2023: Gulu City West Boda-boda Association are excited that the Mapenduzi Foundation has come in to support their business while setting pages of saving.
Last week, over 1,800 members of the boda-boda association witnessed the receipt of 10 new motorcycles from the Foundation as part of the efforts to promote boda boda industry in Acholi sub-region.
The publication’s Sub-Regional Correspondent, Lil Okot, based in Gulu City interviewed the Founder of the Foundation, Martin Ojara Mapenduzi. Ojara is also the MP of Gulu City West.
He said the initiative of supporting riders was established to chase away other companies who are giving high-interest loans to boda-boda operators to pay which they are making double profits.
Mapenduzi confirmed that the Foundation had deposited over shs52.5 million to the account of Pentagon Company Limited for 10 new motorcycles.
“This is a seed capital for Gulu West Boda-boda Association to avoid defaulting from money-making companies.”
“As Mapenduzi Foundation we are trying to trigger the spirit of a saving culture and setting pages for them so that they start multiplying money and profit among the association,” MP Ojara told TND News.
MP Ojara added that the Foundation has a partnership with motorcycles supplier Pentagon Company Limited and that the latter will deliver motorcycles to the associations.
Emmy Ocean is the chairperson of Gulu City West Boda-boda Association in Bardege division. He commented that “it is the right time for this intervention which will facilitate the development of our riders,” adding that “many private companies try to overcharge members for loans”.
“We will be working with Pentagon Company Limited together with the office of Mapenduzi Foundation and office of Gulu West Boba-boda Association to see that no misuse of funds happens in this intervention and no collapse of the project,” Ocen added.
Ocean highlighted that the initial deposit for each motorcycle will be shs2.95 million. “It takes over 14 months to complete the loans with a total of shs6.8 million.” Each of the boda-bodas will have a tracking device for monitoring. Each week, a rider pays shs66, 500 only.
Joseph Odida is the chairperson Layibi Division Boda-boda Association. He criticized members for making it difficult to run the office, claiming that riders are not supporting the office with a single coin.
“Boda-bodas always wait when the time for campaigns starts and run after candidates targeting for some little money given and at the end. They are the poorest people, they are getting rampant divorces due to failure to pay back the loans,” Odida said.
ASP Gilbert Karugaba, the DPC of Gulu West Police post said there is a bad character with boda-bodas in Uganda. Karugaba added that many of them are involved in criminal activities like robbing customers on the roads, link to criminal gangs; they do not respects road signs which is causing road crashes in Uganda.
He also said boda-bodas always pretend not to like Police, yet when their motorcycles are stolen they run after Police to report it.
“You need to register all members of the association for proper monitoring and avoid collapse of the intervention of this project,” DPC told the riders.
Chief of Pageya clan, Okwonga Yusuf Adek disclosed that Acholi community has too much jealousy of development. “I have fears if this intervention will yield the fruits and last long without collapse because some bad-hearted people will start to plan to bring down this project.” “I’ve never seen any initiatives moving in this region apart from that of the foreign people.”
“Many boda-boda riders have bad language which they exchange without giving respect, this is causing curses to the raiders,” said the clan leader.
Rwot Yusuf Adek who was a Chief Guest to launch last week at Kaunda Grounds advised boda-bodas of Gulu West to have a plan for creating jobs, not depending on one thing.
He told them to chase away laziness; something he says “brings you down”.