By ZURAH NAKABUGO
Kiira diesel Kayoola bus, built by Kiira motors at Luweero industries in Nakasongola and managed by National Enterprise Cooperation was unveiled on Wednesday by Gen Muzeeyi Sabiti
the former deputy Police Chief. This bus will also be available in electric version depending on the customers’ need from different parts of Africa.
The bus which did its road tour, travelling from Luwero industries in Nakasongola to Kampala, had a group of journalists as its first passengers enjoying the ride as well as covering the event .
Along the way, in some towns like Kasana Luweero, where the bus stopped and some people asked the driver to enter the bus and view its interior part , were not contended that it has been made in Uganda.
I don’t think Uganda has reached at this level of making the bus. It’s imported,” one Kasozi a vendor from Kasana roadside market says.
Oh, this bus is an example of ‘New Uganda’ which we have been waiting for a long time,” another vendor says.
Muzeeyi who is now the General Manager Luweero industries appealed to businessmen and the government to buy the brand new bus made in Uganda to improve on the country’s transport system.
When these buses are bought, we shall be able to grow and create international market and there will be an increase in job opportunities.
The bus has a business and an economy class. It’s the only bus where you spend less and enjoy good facilities.
And with this bus in future, you don’t need to drive your own car,” he says.
Muzeeyi says, after Kiira motors completing this bus project, they will start producing underground trains to improve on the transport system within the country and also create new jobs for people.
Its an affordable bus since it consumes 22 liters of fuel per 100 km, and its tank capacity is 500 liters. So you can go 2,000 km without the need to refuel. And I don’t think, there is any part of the country, where you can’t reach with this bus,” he says.
Muzeeyi adds,“ the bus also has vital features like at its entrance, it has sanitizer dispenser where people wash their hands to avoid COVID-19.
This bus has a capacity of 47 people, with an executive wing and extra comfort room.Allan Muhumuza, the Director Marketing and Sales at Kiira Motors corporation
says this bus meet the requirements of travelers going up-country, across the boarders, tourists and shuttle service for executive travelers.
It’s also affordable for all average Ugandan in terms of costs.
In terms of purchase price, our bus is competitively priced, depending on the requirements of the customer and the spare parts guarantee, compared to other products on the market today.
But we advise our clients on the best product since with our buses, the customer is saved from paying import duties, compared to fully built unit.
So it’s a cost saving bus,” he says.Muhumuza says, they are ready to serve the market and meet all the requirements of the bus users.
We will work with the bus operators to make a bus that meet their standards as compared to imported buses which sometimes lack some requirements, and its operators have no say about it,” he says.
We shall work with all bus operators in the country to equip them with knowledge, to keep the buses fully operational on the road,” he adds.
This bus comes with installed CCTV cameras in and outside the bus for security purposes.
In addition, comes with on-board Wi-Fi connectivity, charging USB port for each seat, fridge, toilets, magazine holder behind the seats and a TV,” Muhumuza says.
The journalists loved the bus as it’s the first of its kind in East Africa due to its unique features like little fuel consumption compared to other buses, sanitizer dispenser to wash hand and avoid COVID-19, CCTV cameras and USB charging system on every seat.
Muhumuza says, Kiira motors is working with reputable strategic to produce 30,000 buses for the regional market, with 65 per cent parts and components localized by 2030 .
This builds on the successful development of the Kayoola electric and Diesel buses built through technology transfer and utilizing the facilities and resources at the UPDF National enterprise corporation Luwero industries,” he says.
Muhumuza also says, Kiira motors and the partners plan to produce and deploy 1,030 buses by end of 2021, 50 of which will be electric.
The initiative is aimed at modernizing public transport in the urban center in Uganda and beyond, while building the indigenous motor vehicle industry through technology transfer and localization of auto parts manufacturing,” he says.
Kampala and other cities in the region have for decades faced challenges of road and traffic congestion, pollution, unemployment and under employment resulting into low fuel economy, poor air quality, low labour productivity, and compromised road safety.
This calls for establishment of a robust integrated and inclusive mass transport system based on environmentally friendly solutions.
Couple with localization of capabilities to develop, make and sell vehicles and components, this provides an unprecedented opportunity for transforming the economy drawing on the demographic dividend of Uganda,” Muhumuza says.
The establishment of mass transit Bus systems support by the domestic manufacturing of buses and components for the regional market is consistent with Uganda’s aspirations and pathways to vision 2040 outlined in the national development plan III and the NRM Manifesto 2021 – 2026.
The above developments are projected to create over 30,000 jobs directly, 100,000 jobs indirectly, and catalyze investments by Micro small and medium enterprise in the manufacture of motor vehicle parts.
The strategic and long-term focus on electric buses for the cities further demonstrates Uganda’s commitment to enhance environmental stewardship.Zuraneetah2015@gmail.