What you need to know:
Officials remained tight-lipped about the fares. The buses are expected to hit the road on March 9.
Pioneer Easy Bus Company has unveiled 100 buses out of the expected 522 to the media. These will join public transport in the greater Kampala area, ahead of its grand launch early next month.
The first batch of Kampala Pioneer Easy buses arrived in the country two weeks ago, kicking off preparations for a major change in public transport in the city. The 60-passenger- sitter shuttles will initially offer transport services in Ntinda, Luzira and Bweyogerere in eastern Kampala city.
Pioneer Easy Bus Company spokesperson Connie Nankya did not divulge the fares to be charged but said they will be affordable to the passengers. “We are planning a launch that will see the unveiling of the buses to the public. It is on this very day that we shall reveal the exciting bus rates. We intend to make public transport, convenient so we shall not have payments on the buses,” Ms Nankya said yesterday.
She added: A person will be required to buy a ticket from our agents who shall be everywhere. The ticket shall be availed to the conductor who will stamp it, after which they board the bus until their final destination.” However, in future she said, PEB will introduce electronic system where passengers can access cards that they can load on a weekly, monthly and yearly basis.
The company imported the first batch of 100 shuttles and the remaining 422 units will be delivered by the end of this year. At yesterday’s press conference, addressed by a cross section of city councillors, the Kampala Lord Mayor, Mr Erias Lukwago, was questioned why he was against the rolling out of the city buses.
Last week, Parliament questioned the rollout of Pioneer Easy Bus Company services in Kampala, Wakiso and Mukono, following inquiries into whether its contract was valid.
But Ms Nankya insists that PEB has a valid contract and will go ahead with their plan to rollout in east and west of Kampala.
This follows a petition by Kiira, Nansaana, Mukono and Entebbe local councils, questioning Kampala Capital City Authority’s mandate in determining the buses routes in their areas.
However, Ms Alum Santa Ogwang, the Oyam Woman MP, cautioned against halting the rollout of the bus service warning of the consequences that come with terminating contracts.