KAMPALA- Boda boda riders under Safe boda, the motorcycle ride-hailing company in Uganda are denouncing the 15 percent increment, money that is deducted from them on each customer by safe boda company.
Safe boda started with five percent, later increased to ten percent and now last week it was increased to 15 percent which leaves the boda riders crying.
The informer Ug talked to safe boda riders who say, the increment is unnecessary since the app charges customers less money. They say the company should increase the rates on App to help them benefit as well.
Juma Mukiibe, a safe boda rider says that most of them still use the App because it keeps them busy since there are many customers that request for their services, otherwise, there are less incomes compared to other boda rides.
A safe boda rider charges less money compared to other boda boda riders, an example if you board from Bukoto to Nile Avenue, it will charge you shillings 2500 only and another boda charges between shillings 3000-4000.
James Sewanyana, another safe boda rider explains that most of the time he puts his App off and he charges customers as usual. He requests the company to either take them back to ten percent or increase on customer charges.
We talked to some other safe boda riders who threaten to leave the company because it’s no longer favoring them at all. Nicolas Nkugwa, a safe boda rider explains.
Hanington Tumuhimbise a safe boda rider argues that the company is favoring customers and leaving out riders yet they are the ones supporting the business. He says, he uses airtime and data to be on a safe boda App, yet the customers are charged less amounts.
Tumuhimbise requests the company to reduce 15 percent to at least seven percent.
This reporter also realizes that there are safe boda riders that you request on App and when they reach, they request that you allow them to take a trip which is off the App and you give them the same amount the App showed you. They do this to avoid being charged by the company.
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According to Ricky Rapa-Thompson, Safe boda Co-Founder, they increased the rate because of the effect of Covid-19 pandemic which affected their business heavily.
Thompson reveals that with that increment they hope to raise funds that can help in running the business. He however, says they have received complaints from riders, saying that this increment is much for them.
Adding that however, their riders usually earn 30 per cent more than regular boda bodas, even though the prices are fixed, because it is faster for them to get new customers through the app
Ricky says that they will look into that and see what they can do to cater for their riders.
Safe boda today is the leading safe ride in Africa with a fleet of over 13,000 drivers in East and West Africa with close to 200 employees, more than 8,500 boda riders.
Safe Boda is one of the fast-growing start-up businesses in the boda-boda transport service that brought innovation to the growing motorcycle taxi industry in Uganda and Africa.
The community of riders use mobile phone technology to bring services to the people where one makes an order for the ride, right on their handsets. It was founded in Kyebando, a Kampala city suburb in 2015.