Boda-boda

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Description:
Boda-boda (or bodaboda) also known as a Poda-Poda in some parts of Africa is a bicycle taxi, originally in East Africa (from English border-border). The bicycle rider can also be called boda-boda. In Uganda it is often abbreviated as simply Boda.

Origin

The boda-boda taxis are part of the African bicycle culture; they started in the 1960s and 1970s and are still spreading from their origin on the Kenyan - Ugandan border to other regions. The name originated from a need to transport people across the "no-mans-land" between the border posts without the paperwork involved with using motor vehicles crossing the international border. This started in southern border crossing town of Busia (Kenya/Uganda), where there is over half a mile between the gates, and quickly spread to the northern border town of Malaba (Kenya). The bicycle owners would shout out boda-boda (border-to-border) to potential customers - not to be confused with poda-poda, which is a form of shared taxi in Sierra Leone.

Bicycles in use and type of work

Indian or Chinese standard roadster bicycles are used with locally made carriers and a cushion to transport passengers and goods. There are big advantages compared to the expensive, slow and heavy Cycle rickshaw used in Asia.

In many East African and Central African cities and villages, professional bodaboda taxi-drivers are common. Bodaboda organizations have been founded in many towns. They help to minimize the risks (dangerous driving, badly...
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