By Mukomboozi Peter
The Bus operators in Kabale district have doubled the fares following the resumption of public transport.
On Friday while reopening public transport, Museveni said that the buses and taxis should carry half of their capacity to ensure physical distancing and also ensure that each traveler has a face mask.
Buses and taxis resumed operations yesterday, 42 days after President Yoweri Museveni suspended public transport to contain the spread of COVID-19.
In Kabale, Bus companies that include Gate Way, Jaguar, Jussy, Baby Coach, Horizon, Platinum, and Mash Poa met on Sunday and agreed to double the rates.
Transport from Kabale to Kampala has doubled to 60,000 Shillings from 30,000 Shillings, Kabale to Mbarara is now shillings 30,000 from 15,000. Kabale to Kisoro is shillings 30,000 from 10,000, Kabale-Katuna is now shillings 10,000 from 4,000.
Kabale-Rukungiri is now 30,000 from 15,000 Shillings. From the Kabale to the Uganda-Rwanda border of Kamwezi costs 20,000 shillings from 7,000. From Kabale to Rubanda is now 10,000 from 5,000 shillings.
Justus Tukamushaba, the Secretary-General of Kabale Taxi and Bus Park Operators Association attributed the increase in transport fares to the presidential directives of having busses and other public transport services carrying passengers at half capacity.
He says the fare will enable the bus operators to compensate for the empty seats as they comply with the COVID-19 preventive measures.
The Homeland Newspaper, reporter visited Kisoro Taxi Park commonly known as Esso Mosque, there was no observance of the Standard Operating Procedures-SOPs. There was no handwashing facility, while some passengers, taxi drivers and touts were also not wearing masks.
Henry Tindyebwa, the Chairperson for Kabale Bus Park Operators Association, says that they have informed bus companies that their respective offices at the park should have hand washing facilities and each bus should have sanitizers for the passengers.
Hassan Ayoub alias Yubican, a tout at GateWay Bus company in Kabale says that they will attempt to observe all the guidelines.