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Mantra Motorbike to introduce welfare fund for Boda Boda riders

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By Our Reporter

Mantra Motorbike EA, a leading automotive dealer, has announced plans to introduce a welfare fund for Boda Boda riders. This was revealed during a ceremony held on Thursday at their showroom located at Ghats Complex in Industrial area as they officially welcomed Hero MotoCorp to the Ugandan market. Hero MotoCorp is the world’s largest two-wheeler company by unit sales and are makers of motorcycles called HERO.

Speaking at the event, Ankush Arora, the Chief Operations Officer AL Mansour Automotive group, noted that Boda Boda riders form the biggest part of their customers and creating a fund for them is one way they are trying to improve their welfare.

“We want to introduce a fund to improve welfare of Boda Boda riders,” Arora said. “We will contribute a dollar towards this fund for every sale we make and this will cater to any calamity that Boda Boda riders may face.”

During the ceremony, four motorcycles were launched and these are; the Dawn 100, Dawn 125, Dawn 150 TR and scooter Destini 125.

According to Gaurav Anand, the Head of Business Unit, Mantra Motorbike EA, the newly launched motorcycles will cater to needs of the Boda Boda segment as well as commuting needs for individuals.“The four newly launched bikes have different performance parameters, giving the end-user options that best suit their needs. The dawn 100 is pocket friendly; ideal for the local Boda Boda business, The dawn 125 is perfectly suited for rough street roads or hilly areas, the Destini 125 scooter and the dawn 150 are your safest bet for office errands and delivery businesses.” He explained.

Mantra Motorbike EA Limited operates showrooms and workshops at Jinja Road & Ndeeba which are stocked with a complete range of spare parts.

Apart from Kampala, Hero motorcycles are available in Mbale, Arua & Isingiro, through the dealership network of Mantra Motorbike EA and soon they will be available across the country.

“The motorcycle taxi industry is presently growing rapidly and therefore calls for motorcycles that are leading with innovation, performance and plush comfort; attributes the Hero bikes offer. This makes them some of the most sought-after bikes on the market. Operations have been ongoing for a couple of months with an assembly plant in Ntinda Industrial area, a sales outlet in Ndeeba, and the showroom/main offices on Jinja road. Therefore, Mantra Motorbike East Africa, the sole distributors of the bikes are fully capable of supplying and maintaining the performance and longevity of the bikes in the market.” Commented Mohamad Khadr, Country General Manager Uganda, Mantra Motorbike East Africa Ltd and MAC East Africa.

Mantra Motorbike EA is part of AL Mansour Automotive group, which is one of the largest General Motors dealers with brands such as Chevrolet, GMC, Cadillac & AC Delco along with Opel, Peugeot, MG & Isuzu.

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Vivo Energy donates school materials to Kiswa Primary School

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By Our Reporter

Vivo Energy Uganda, the company that distributes and markets Shell branded fuels and lubricants in Uganda, has visited Kiswa Primary School in Bugolobi, Kampala and donated school materials and sanitary towels worth Fifteen million Uganda shillings to enhance its Schools’ Education Support programme.

The donation was handed over by Vivo Energy Uganda Managing Director, Mr. Gilbert Assi in the presence of the school community, Vivo Energy Group Chairman, Mr. John Daly, Non-Executive Director, Ms. Hixonia Nyasulu, Executive Vice President for East and Southern Africa, Mr. Hans Paulsen and staff.

Kampala Capital City Authority’s Director of Education and Social Services, Miss Juliet Nambi Namuddu was the guest of honour at the colourful function that was also attended by the Mayor of Nakawa Division, Hon. Ronald Bamwezo under whose jurisdiction the school is located.

Speaking at the school visit, Mr. Gilbert Assi remarked that education is one of Vivo Energy’s priority areas of community investment. “We believe in empowering the future generation of leaders by giving them opportunities to learn. We hope that the support that we have given to this school today will in turn lead to improved literacy, better grades and overall improvement of the school’s performance.”

He added, “Vivo Energy Uganda’s Schools’ Road Safety Education programmes have in the past five years trained pupils in over 120 primary schools as road safety ambassadors. Kiswa Primary School was one of the first schools that we approached at the time. We are pleased that this relationship has progressed to the point where we are confident in the abilities of the children to support fellow children to observe safe road practices. We focus on children as the future drivers in order to inculcate in them a culture of road safety at a young age. Children can also be effective in influencing their parents’ behaviour and through these efforts, we would like to win them over first as a way to reach their parents.”

Ms. Aisha Bagaya Ntege, the Head Teacher of Kiswa Primary School commended Vivo Energy Uganda for identifying the school’s challenges and supporting the administration to address them. “Our school population consists of over 2000 children, drawn from the less fortunate communities near and far from our location. We try our best to manage the existing challenges such as limited learning resources, nutrition, absenteeism of female students due to poor management of menstruation and more. I am delighted that companies such as Vivo Energy Uganda have a heart for the communities around them and reach out to support education. We appreciate this gesture.”

KCCA Director of Education and Social Services, Ms. Juliet Nambi Namuddu expressed her appreciation to Vivo Energy Uganda for supporting education in Uganda: “On behalf of KCCA, that manages public schools in the city, we commend Vivo Energy Uganda for continually partnering with us to make education experience for the children less of a challenge. We encourage like-minded organisations to join us in a similar initiative.” Adding, “It is a sad reality that one out of 10 African girls skip school or drop out of school entirely due to lack of menstrual products and proper access to proper sanitation according to United Nations Children’s Fund. However, this hindrance to the education of female students is now a priority for the KCCA and for the Ministry of Education.”

Vivo Energy Group Chairman John Daly and Non-Executive Director, Ms. Hixonia Nyasulu are currently in the country on a business familiarization tour of Vivo Energy Uganda.

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Coca-Cola Beverages Africa contributes to improved access to clean drinking water for vulnerable households

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    Chris Matabi, founder Nyonta Relief, demonstrating how the Nyonta kit works.

By Our Reporter

Coca-Cola Beverages Africa in Uganda, through Century and Rwenzori Bottling Companies, has launched a collaboration with Nyonta Relief to provide increased access to safe water for vulnerable households in Ndeeba, in Kampala.

Supporting the project “Nyonta Tree For Life”, Coca-Cola Beverages Africa will supply 100 ‘Nyonta Kits’ to families in Ndeeba, which will give them clean drinking water for use in their households for drinking, cooking and other uses.

The Nyonta Kit uses gravity to purify over 100 LPD of any water from a fresh water source making it safe for human consumption. The contribution is valued at UGX33million and will go to 500 people in the Ndeeba community.

Conrad van Niekerk, Managing Director of Century and Rwenzori Bottling Companies, said the company support to the vulnerable communities in Ndeeba was underpinned by the belief that all people around the world deserved a chance to access safe water for life.

“It is therefore critical for us, as part of the world’s leading beverage company, to use water responsibly in our operations and also lead in giving it back. We work to protect local water resources and provide safe, clean drinking water to communities in need,” he said.

He said water was a key issue for the Coca-Cola system around the world and pledged that the company would continue using water responsibly to ensure that the bottling operations in Uganda reduced water use and supported the provision on safe, clean drinking water to communities.

Explaining the project, Nyonta Relief Patron, Hon. Joyce Nabosa Ssebugwawo, said that in Uganda, it is estimated that 33 children die every day due to diarrhea from contaminated drinking water.

“That is why we launched the ‘Anti33’ campaign; to bring together people and organisations who feel the moral obligation to help reduce the number of children dying of preventable drinking water diseases. We are happy that Coca-Cola Beverages Africa has joined us today,” she said.

Hon. Ssebugwawo further noted that since mothers are the custodians of household health, ensuring the availability of drinking water in homes is their direct responsibility. She encouraged all women to join the campaign.

“Having access to clean drinking water is key to a healthy life. Additionally, availability of clean drinking water has the power to encourage gender equality, stable education for children in a home and income generation for mothers who will have ample time since sickness in a home is eliminated.” She added.

It is worth noting that millions of people across the world are deprived of this essential need. The issue is particularly problematic in Southern Africa. According to UNICEF, in Uganda it is estimated that 60% of the population has no access to potable water, leading to the death of 33 children every day.

The Ministry of Water and Environment in July this year presented Coca-Cola Beverages Africa with an award for Water Usage Efficiencies at the Mbarara Plant, after a sector audit covering 24 companies in Uganda.

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Local farmers exposed to modern farming practices

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By Our Reporter

On Tuesday, Agilis Partners, an agricultural development company, hosted smallholder farmers to a farmers day event where they exposed the farmers to modern farming practices in a bid to help them improve the quality and quantity of their yield. The event which was held at one of the company’s farming units in Kigumba, Kiryandongo district was attended by hundreds of farmers from sorrounding areas.

The farmers were introduced to the advanced farming techniques used on the Agilis farm throughout the lifecycle of the crops from proper land preparation to good post-harvest handling and storage practices.

Sitting on over 15,000 hectares of land, the Agilis farm is divided into four different units with the main crops grown being maize, sunflower and soyabean. The farming is highly mechanised with two production systems which are harrowing(use of tractors to prepare the land) and conservation farming(a system in which the soil surface is not broken).

According to Jadribo Martin, the agronomist in charge of smallholder farmers at Agilis, they have repackaged their farming protocol into an easy to understand document which has then been shared with the farmers.

“The document is divided into three stages – growth stage, business planning and investment stage. This way farmers are able to go and replicate our mode of operation at their own farms,” he noted.

With a vision to make Uganda the continent’s food basket, Benjamin Prinz, the Agilis co-managing partner postulates that there is infinite potential in the sector which can be realised if all stakeholders work together from investors, to smallholder farmers as well as other industry players.

“We have the capital and technical know-how to maximise our yield as well as access to markets. It is therefore our responsibility to share this knowledge, resources and markets with the community.” He explained. “We do not only invest in land and farming activities but also partner with farmers to help them co-market their grain with us. This way the whole community benefits and promotes their well-being.”

Founded in 2013, Agilis Partners operates two different companies; the Joseph Initiative Limited which is one of the leading exporters of grains from Uganda to the East African region and Asili Farms which is one of the largest farming companies in Uganda. The company’s main customers are food manufacturers, aid organizations and protein producers with in the region.

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