By Sierra Ruth Arinaitwe
After a return journey from Kampala to Mayuge and Jinja districts using the fully electric Kayoola EVS, Benjamin Kamara, the Chief Director of Energy in the Ministry of Energy, Sierra Leone confessed that he is now confident and inspired to own an electric vehicle made in Uganda.
“When we were informed that we were to travel using an electric bus, I was expectant that we would make a stop over to either charge or for battery exchange, however, we had a seamless journey with no stop overs owing to such incidences,” Kamara said noting that electric vehicles will help to mitigate challenges relating to escalating fuel prices.
Kamara, is part of a delegation attending a training in power purchase agreements and financial modelling for electricity supply industry for the governments of Malawi and Sierra Leone organized by the Global Energy Alliance for People and Planet (GEAPP) in Uganda.
The delegation of about 30 participants had the privilege to visit some of Uganda’s power sites in Mayuge and Jinja districts in the comfort of the Kayoola EVS bus produced by Uganda ‘s automakers Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC.)
Nelson Thokozan, an official from the Ministry of Energy, Malawi describes his first journey while using an electric vehicle as smooth and comfortable. “What captured my attention was the less noise emitted by the bus and its ability of to travel such a long distance while still enabling the use of battery draining features such as the air conditioners, wifi, radio and lights,” he stated.
Thokozan referred to Uganda’s Kiira Motors Corporation as a perfect benchmark for vehicle manufacturing in Africa. “The government of Malawi has strategic plans to introduce vehicle manufacturing in the country. Once its ready, Uganda will be suitable for a pilot program to start the implementation of these plans,” he said.
Ambrose Atipo a partner at KK Advisors, a firm that is conducting the training said that one of GEAPP’s objectives is ending energy poverty by encouraging the up-take of renewable energy and Kiira Motors Kayoola EVS buses are an appropriate means of transportation-in the E-mobility space which uses renewable sources of energy.
He added that by using the Kayoola EVS, a Ugandan innovation to transport international delegates was a great opportunity for Uganda’s automotive industry flagship – to showcase and spur interest of collaboration with development partners and other African countries to supply quality electric buses like the Kayoola EVS.
“The journey to and from Mayuge and Jinja districts created mindset change about the use of electric vehicles in other countries. Most delegates are sure that they can now own an electric car produced in Uganda/Africa and drive it comfortably,” he said.
Atipo called for increased sensitization about the electric buses as a means of breaking the barriers and promoting entry into the e-mobility sector by all African sister countries. Kiira Motors Kayoola EVS are being operated by Kalita Transporters bus company .
Kiira Motors Corporation(KMC) is a mobility enterprise established to champion value addition in the nascent mobility industry in Uganda through technology transfer, contract manufacturing and supply chain localization.
The company’s core business is to develop, make and sell sustainable mobility solutions (motor vehicles, parts, systems & amp; services) in Africa.
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