“We followed and we know that there were hidden forces dealing with the bikers to take to the streets, there were politicians involved, forces that wanted to create destabilization at the level of governance in Luanda”, said Bento Rafael in statements to Lusa, without, however, specifying.
According to the official, the demonstration by motorcycle taxi drivers, held in the early evening of Thursday, in the center of Luanda, “was not justified and was encouraged by people outside the motorcycle taxi activity”.
“Many knew that we were meeting to find some consensus and that demonstration that took place yesterday was not justified. So how come the parties sit down to find the best way out of a procedure and there are protests in the streets, with sad results such as injuries. It was unnecessary,” he stressed.
The Provincial Government of Luanda (GPL) banned the circulation of motorcycles on some of the capital's main roads with the aim of improving circulation and reducing accidents, which totaled 768 in the first half of the year.
Accidents caused by mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles resulted in 134 deaths and 725 injuries, of which 368 were serious, according to data presented on Tuesday by the head of the Traffic and Road Safety department of the Province of Luanda, superintendent Simão Saulo.
Thousands of citizens in Luanda use motorcycle taxis to get to the city center or even to more distant areas on the outskirts.
The Amotrang management, which met on Thursday with the GPL, held a meeting this Friday with the leaders of the main motorcycle taxi stops, in which the authorities' new measure was analyzed.
“We were able to hear the problems that exist in several places in Luanda and we were also able to send the message that they must work normally. This is the message we sent after we also left the meeting with the GPL”, said Bento Rafael.
"At this moment we are back to normality and the rest we will continue to work on raising the awareness of our motorcycle taxi drivers to make the activity much smoother and with fewer accidents, which is what we all want", he stressed.
According to the leader of Amotrang, motorcycle taxi drivers left the meeting this Friday "satisfied", mainly due to the "return of activity on all roads in Luanda".
Motorcyclists should strictly follow the authorities' measure "when the secondary and tertiary roads are treated to receive the influx of motorcycle taxi drivers in Luanda", he stressed.
Bento Rafael who, on Thursday, regretted to Lusa the fact that the association was not consulted by the GPL, today praised the meeting held with the administrative authorities of Luanda.
“One of the big problems that we regret is the fact that we were not heard as an organization that leads bikers and yesterday (Thursday) fortunately we were called to correct some things and we are doing it”, concluded the person in charge.
Amotrang, in Luanda alone, currently has more than 20,000 motorcycle taxi drivers.