Taxi strike paralyses city. That was the news on Monday when industrial action by Uganda Taxi Drivers And Operators Association left many Kampalans stranded at their homes, unable to get to work.
Most saw it as a painful inconvenience (or, if you have a car an awesome early Christmas) and much was tweeted. But nobody was able to give the other side of the story – – the story from the taxi man’s point of view.
So here at SUIT we managed to speak to Mengo-based taxi driver Posiano Mukiibi. I asked him what prompted him to participate in the strike and what his experience was.
Posiano Mukiibi: Well, we taxi people we really work hard, that is one thing KCCA fails to appreciate. We struggle to serve the community from dawn until the last person is home. We deserve better treatment.
Q: So why did you take part in the strike?
A: Okay the night before, I was out, me, Payo, Mark, Jose and some campus guys called Robbo, Jamo and one whose names I didn’t get. You know how Legends is mob loud. The music is so much. You can’t even hear people’s names. Anyway.
A: But man, those guys are cooraayzzy! I think they were med students. Next thing we know, it’s tequilas and tequilas.
A: Dude, I am telling you, we fired more shots than the Expendables. It was buladde!
A: Next thing I know, I am waking up in some guy’s bathroom in Kyebando, it’s freaking eleven thirty and I have no idea how I got there.
Q: No idea?
A: Man, I told those Payos this wasn’t funny. I am supposed to be at jobbo at five thirty a.m. Or the muloodi will fire my ass. I was so late. I had to get to work.
Q: To work?
A: And here I am in Kyebando. Yet I park my taxi in Nakulabye overnight.
A: So I dash to the nearest stage to grab a taxi to town. Nara taxis. I. Waited and waited and waited and eh! No taxi was showing self. Not even bodas. I had no choice. I had to walk.
Q: To walk. Yes.
A: I walked, I walked, I walked. I even got hungry, but luckily there are primary schools on the road, so I just climbed in and made the kids give me their break. Fuck kids. Don’t look at me like that. I was hungry.
A: So I waaalk I walk I walk.
A: And took a couple of naps because, you man, I was up all night and now I was hung over and had not eaten anything except milk biscuits and Yojus.
A: When I got there, okay I was just about to reach, I was on Apollo Kagwa near the hostels, then this campus bird calls me like “Yo, Pos!” I’m like, “Who dat, who dat? She’s all like, “Remember me? Robbo’s girlfriend. We were hanging out last night at Panamurder. Man you were so fucked up!” Then I remembered. I swear it was craaaaayzeee. Those Robbos party like booze is oxygen.
A: Anyway, so me and the kyane jaaaazed and jaaaazed and jazzed. You know chicks can have mob jazz.
Q: If you say so.
A: So after we finished having sex, I told her I needed to get to work. She said kawa. Even her she needed to go and get a morning after pill. So I burst.
A: So I climb the hill, get the taxi, get a conductor and we go on our route.
Q: And the strike?
A: By then it was like five pm. Strike had ended.