Last week, Police released a compilation of September CCTV Camera footage of boda boda accidents in Kampala. The video that made rounds on social media intrigued Daniel Omara, the Hear Me Out show presenter on RX radio to share tips on how Bodaboda users can safeguard themselves to avoid nasty accidents.
Drawing from his experience, as one who has survived five bodaboda accidents without permanent damage, Daniel learned how to get along with the unavoidable swiftness of the bodabodas.
1. Do not Leave Your Safety Into The Hands Of The Rider
“The biggest mistake people make is assuming that their safety is a priority to bodaboda riders. Guide them, and dictate how they drive you, the routes to use, how to overtake and to obey road rules,” he explained.
Daniel said that because most riders have no driving licenses and usually drive without knowledge of traffic rules, a passenger has to dictate and tell them to respect traffic rules.
2. Getting A Personal Boda Guy
In a new environment, Daniel advised people to try out different boda riders from nearby stages and give a few tests to gauge whether they are reliable.
“A boda guy could be the difference between life and death. An effective boda guy means you can deliver everything you want or pass on without sitting on the bike.”
“Test them with simple things like sending them to the shop for something whose price you know and see what prices they tell you and the explanations they give, pretend to forget the balance and see whether they will give it to you. That is how you will tell if they are trustworthy,” he said.
3. A Muslim Boda Guy
According to Daniel, since Muslim boda guys do not drink alcohol, safety is guaranteed. “Most Muslim boda guys I have had genuinely do not drink. They may have some other issues but not drinking,”
He also encouraged people to avoid boda cyclists wearing sunglasses because they might hide something like bad eyesight.
4. A Boda Guy With A Clean Bike And Helmet
“Having a clean motorcycle means the rider values the bike, and that also means they value their customer. An accident would mean losing the property and the customers who are the source of income.
He also discourages users from riding with bodaboda cyclists with fresh scars because they can still risk their lives by getting into another accident.
5. A Boda Cyclist Who Has Hobbies
“This sounds weird, but I am not joking. Get a boda guy that has hobbies, plays soccer on Sunday at 4p.m, has a schedule, and has responsibilities like dropping kids to school. In other words, one who is not readily available all the time because if people have trusted them with their kids, that means they are trustworthy and also have a life.”
As an extra tip, he suggested that using a boda boda headed in the same direction as the passenger gives a chance of being charged cheaply. However, he advised against using the same tip at night because many are thugs.
“They should either be affiliated to a stage and remember to dictate the route they use. The boda industry is a trick. I have survived for 20 years without getting mugged, died, or robbed in an accident because I applied these rules. And just like anything else, precaution doesn’t guarantee 100 percent safety but reduces your chances of being screwed over,” he said.
Hear Me Out is hosted by Daniel Omara every Saturday from 10 am to Midday on RX Radio.
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