Thursday, July 24, 2014

Of Mikokoteni and Motorcycles

I don't know what to write today. The thing that's on my mind is the passing of a friend of mine but I don't think I'm ready to talk about that yet. So instead I'm going to do a short rant about mikokoteni (push carts) and motor cycles.

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=https%3A%2F%2Fakwaabaaccra.files.wordpress.com%2F2011%2F04%2Fhelping-push-the-cart.jpg&imgrefurl=https%3A%2F%2Fakwaabaaccra.wordpress.com%2Fcategory%2Funcategorized%2F&h=1944&w=2592&tbnid=pHzjYQgRqCXmKM%3A&zoom=1&docid=n5iAI7-OJNGF5M&ei=Nh7RU93iI63H7AbpyICQAg&tbm=isch&ved=0CCgQMygKMAo&iact=rc&uact=3&dur=2187&page=1&start=0&ndsp=14
[image]
These two classes of vehicles seem to think they don't need to obey traffic rules. Mikokoteni  routinely go up the wrong side of the road causing all kinds of mayhem traffic-wise and even when they're going the right way they are often moving so slow they still cause a minor snare up behind. If you're on foot you're not spared as because their drivers have no scruples getting on the pavement to avoid traffic. Finally I've seen a number of them scratch the side of cars as they try to squeeze through the miniscule spaces or simply because the driver can't control the massive weight they're transporting.

Now let me start on motorbikes. These guys regularly jump lights, weave in and out of traffic indiscriminately without concern for the pedestrians who may be crossing, but the worst thing, the absolute worst thing, is when they use the sidewalks to avoid traffic and have the audacity to get mad at you when you don't get out of the way fast enough or if you're unlucky, just get knocked into like you're completely in the wrong.

I once got tapped by a side mirror or hand bar of one of these things and I can tell you for free it's not a pleasant experience. I remember almost jumping out of my skin and thinking all at once, "What's happening? Am I on the road? What's this thing doing on the sidewalk? Who the fuck does this guy think he is?" I then began looking frantically around me for something to throw because they guy had already sped of without an apology.

I think it's about time the traffic police got way more strict about the rules in regards to these two classes of vehicles. The mkokoteni problem presents an opportunity to entrepreneurs who can figure out a way to transport goods around the city for as cheap or nearly as cheap as a mkokoteni. The motorcycles just need the firm hand of the police to come down hard on them and throw a few of them in prison to serve as a warning for the rest because how they behave is not only dangerous for them but, more importantly for me (and other pedestrians but mostly me) when I'm walking on the streets. Peace!!!

1 comment:

  1. And my prayer is that we don't get to the situation in Kampala. where motorcycles swarm about like bees-and the insults the drivers hurl at people!! You would wonder who said Ugandans are polite people.

    ReplyDelete