Recently, a friend invited me to Bweyogerere for a business meeting. It was 7: 30pm and at that time, the traffic jam in and around Kampala is crazy. My only option was to use a boda boda.
As I was still bargaining with a boda boda rider who wanted Shs8,000 from Cham Towers to Bweyogerere, I heard someone shouting “The train is leaving soon! Train ! Nakawa-Kireka- Bweyogerere-Namanve”.
At first, I ignored the call because I had never used a train before. My friends had discouraged me from using the train claiming that it’s for ‘low class’ people and that everyone on it is usually sweaty and stinky.
Out of curiosity, I went to the station and was told that the fare to Bweyogerere was Shs1,000. Surprisingly, I found all classes of people on the train including corporate, very beautiful classy women, great looking young men in suits, etc.
It was after reaching Bweyogerere that I found out that many corporate people park their cars in Kireka, Bweyogerere in the morning and use the train only to return in the evening and drive back home. It took me only 25 Minutes to reach Bweyogerere at a cost of only Shs1, 000.
I believe the solutions to the growing problems of our city can be solved by introducing a good railway system in our city. If the government can introduce railway transport on the major routes out of the city and that is Kampala to Mpigi, Entebbe, Wakiso-Hoima road, Mityana, Bombo-Luweero, Lugazi-Jinja, Gayaza-kayunga. This would help; Increase the city radius because people can comfortably live in distant locations with an assurance of affordable fares and fast means of transport to the city centre.
The cost of living will drastically scale down since these distant locations are usually cheap to rent. And automatically due to the forces of demand and supply, even the nearby accommodation will eventually cost less.
Most Ugandans will automatically prefer to leave their cars home or at the railway station in the morning and move to the city using trains. The other point is that most people will prefer trains because they are time saving. Taxis will only be used in places where the trains don’t reach. This will decongest traffic in Kampala. Let’s make Kampala great and affordable for everyone!
Benson Muhumuza, email@example.com