When you stay in an area long enough, you begin to notice patterns. The condition of the taxis that are on your commute, the people at the stage, the drivers of said taxis, the conductors and the people at the stage. You know, the ones the conductors snob after their taxis are filled with commuters. The people who cling the taxi door until the conductor tips them and normally, it is not a respectful exchange, more of dropping a coin onto the road and him shouting out to the guy through the window saying, “Tuja komawo”. In the rearview, you see the disappointed look on the tout’s face.
The year is 2015, and I have recently notice two of these said touts rise up in through the ranks – so to speak.
One elevated to conductor status – but him, I have only seen drive by.
The second now appears to be head of other touts and can often be seen wearing one of those hazard jackets, and his own version of Ray-Ban. Why did I notice him you ask? Well, I will tell you.
There was a tussle in the park – one driver was vehemently stating how unfair it have been for another taxi to be filled before his. The person in charge of allocating the order in which the taxis were to be filled was not having any of it – in fact, it would be safe to say that they guy was rudely ignoring him. This obviously served to further infuriate the driver. At this point other drivers were now adding their version of salt to the injury – none of which was helping anything.
In saunters our Ray-Ban, speaking calmly and trying to defuse the situation. The angry driver now deferred to him, in a manner almost as if seeking him to be on his side.
“Well, this is definitely a turn in events… How did this happen” I wondered silently to myself.
And within minutes, calm had ensued and Ray-Ban is looking over the books and inspecting them.
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One random thing, I do not know the politics behind the different governing transport bodies, but I do respect the fact that these guys are trying to organise themselves.
** Image from Kirabo Byabashaija #KoiKoiUG