Ver Angola


Motorcycle taxi drivers from Luanda announce demonstration against circulation restrictions for Saturday

The Union of Mototaxi Drivers of Angola (UMA) announced a demonstration for next Saturday against the restrictions on the circulation of these vehicles, announced by the Provincial Government of Luanda (GPL).


According to Augusto Mateus, the protest, promoted at the request of around 300 members represented by this association, is due to the measures announced, namely, the ban on circulation on some of the main streets and avenues of Luanda, which "did not sit well with class".

Motorcycle taxis are one of the most popular means of transport in Luanda and mobilize thousands of young Angolans who find this activity, in the absence of other professional alternatives, a means of livelihood.

"We are going to take to the streets to show our discontent", the president of UMA told Lusa, adding that the association has not been invited to the clarification meetings that GPL has promoted with other counterparts, such as AMOTRANG, "despite the government, police and other entities are aware" of its existence.

Augusto Mateus promised, however, that they will be present, next Thursday, at a new awareness meeting with these professionals.

Asked whether the Association of Motorcyclists and Transporters of Angola (Amotrang) will join the UMA protest, Augusto Mateus considered that the latter "has done little to defend motorbike taxi drivers and is not welcomed by everyone, as there are those who do not feel represented".

He highlighted, however, his intentions to maintain a good relationship with the management of AMOTRANG and said that he tried to have a joint position on the demonstration, but that the president of that association was "unavailable".

The leader of UMA reaffirmed the objective of "defending the interests of motorcycle taxi drivers" with the demonstration, but admitted that it could be stopped, as has happened with many other protests in Luanda.

Augusto Mateus also highlighted that the measure is not intended to be suspended only while the clarification actions take place, but that the objective is to replace it with other proposals that his association will bring to the GPL.

In the document sent to GPL, communicating the intention to hold a demonstration, the signatories, "bikers, members of civil society and motorcycle taxi associations in Luanda", consider the measure "unfair" and "unfounded" and say that the police will take advantage of "extortion of motorcyclists", with the "seizure of hundreds of motorbikes" following the announcement of the GPL last week.

The gathering is scheduled for 10 am at the Santa Ana cemetery, continuing on to the GPL headquarters.


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