Life as a boda-boda driver

Damalie talks to a local boda-boda driver about his occupation and the dangers he faces.

It's competitive, stressful, dangerous and exhausting being a boda-boda driver. Every day, boda-bodas compete for space on roads chock-a-block with cars, vans, lorries, pedal bikes, motorcycles and a never-ending stream of pedestrians. And then there are the crater-sized potholes to dodge too.

Kampala traffic

Setting off on a journey in the capital Kampala, you can never predict the time of arrival. Most of the roads are gridlocked.

Cars mount the edge of the road trying to squeeze their way past the blockages, while motorcyclists, transporting sackloads of food, or planks of wood, weave their way in and out of the cars.

Travelling on the back of a boda-boda is not a safe way to travel, but it's the cheapest way to get about.


Charles points out a blackspot, a sign identifying a particularly dangerous piece of road.

Signs such as this one are fairly new, after the vice-president's 26-year-old son was killed in a car accident in 2010.