In Bangui, motorcycle taxis, estimated at 38,000, have been banned since mid-January, mainly due to safety issues. If the restrictive measure had been respected for several weeks, many drivers decided to get on their motorcycles again despite the ban.
as reported from Bangui, Charlotte Cosset
“The police are over there, that’s why I went through here.” Wonder, motorcycle taxi driver has returned to work despite the ban and therefore avoids police roadblocks.
“I have already resumed my activities a bit like this. It’s not approved yet, but we have no other choice, we have a house to pay for, food … That’s why we go out to get money. Life is hard, it’s very hard. The hardest part is that there is no job. We are not so many young people and we do not have a job, so we take the motorcycle to be able to eat, ”he says.
Frédérique had stopped work since January 13th but he also explains have no choice than to resume his activity: “In relation to the living conditions and difficulties one is obliged to go out,” he testifies.
It was hard for him to stop a motorcycle taxi for a month. “With the little we have, we try to cope,” he adds. But with the ban, it is still difficult to work: “Along the road there are many (customers), but it is not easy to lead everyone away from the police. “
If the official resumption takes time, it is mainly because the authorities are introducing procedures to identify motorcycle taxis to improve safety in Bangui. “It is only the identification conditions that identify the owners of motorcycle taxis and identify the drivers through vests and badges that are made in agreement with the department. It is good for us and it allows us to control our sector, ”explains Jean Kossamake, a representative of motorcycle taxis. He hopes for the green light from the authorities for the resumption of activities next week.