Cycling is one of the fastest growing sports in Uganda and the world in general so if developed can employ over 10% of the world’s sports surviving population. Uganda Cycling federation is the administrative body for this sport in Uganda working tirelessly to lift the sport and accommodate more talents.
The body is affiliated to the continental body “Confederation Of African Cycling” and international governing body “Union Cyclist International”.
The main aim of this federation is to regulate and promote the sport of cycling in Uganda and its offices are located at equatorial shopping mall suit 112 focused in promoting all cycling categories including among others Adventure/Recreational cycling, Road racing, BMX, Enduro races, Mountain biking to mention but a few.
Uganda cycling federation has organized numerous cycling events across the country purposely to spread the sport in all regions which includes among others the national team qualifiers in Kalaji, the women and juniors championship in Buloba, the women’s day race in Nakasongola, the Kabaka’s birth day race on Mityana road, the labor day race in Mityana, the national championship in Masaka , the Kabaka’s coronation race in Mubende,Enduro Mountain Bike Championship in Kakiri to mention but a few.
Uganda cycling federation conceived an idea of organizing the “the car free day” with the theme “I am the solution to pollution and traffic in my city” purposely to create awareness about the likely danger of over relying on cars as major means of transport in Ugandan cities. The federation is targeting a two days event in majorly affected cities of Jinja and Kampala respectively with a staging fun, entertaining and informative activities.
Day one of the event will be held in Jinja and this will be aimed at creating awareness of the mega event to be held the following day in Kampala both dates to be confirmed later. These two cities are chosen basing on the research which shows that they are the most polluted in Uganda.
Locally manufactured bicycles through Bamboo by Uganda cycling federation” Baclo Bikes” shall be take part which will be another good gesture and an encouragement to Ugandans to conserve the environment since Bamboo is locally harvested.
On these days, several roads shall be closed within these cities with guidance of traffic police to allow free mobility of a mob of cyclists and pedestrians to exercise their freedom.
Another activity on this day shall be tree planting in designated areas as a sign of promoting environmental conservation.
Disastrous problems caused by over dependency on cars in Ugandan cities include traffic jam, air and noise pollution, high transport and fuel cost and hence the theme of the event I am the solution to pollution and traffic in my city.
Uganda cycling federation shall organize this event in a manner that all participants shall hold banners and flyers with massages promoting the cause while racing and after, relevant authorities shall be invited to speak to the participants on the state of Ugandan cities due to over dependence on cars and also laying possible solutions.
National Environment (Noise Standards and Control) Regulations, 2003. (Under sections 28 and 107 of the National Environment Act Cap 153) stipulates that no person shall, emit noise in excess of the permissible noise level, unless permitted by a license.
In 2015, scientists at the Makerere University School of Public Health warned as there are many pollutants in Kampala and jinja air. Dr. Bruce Kirenga, in a study “The State of Ambient Air Quality in Two Ugandan Cities”, determined that the mean air pollution in Kampala and Jinja is 5.3 times in respect to safe levels recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO) and called up on measures to provide a solution.
Currently, traffic jam, noise and air pollution in most of Ugandan cities are largely brought about by over dependency on cars even in the city centers. Uganda cycling federation has plans of encouraging Ugandans to reduce on that culture. The federation is also planning to organize leisure cycling events on weekends purposely to maintain health and physical fitness of Ugandans.
CAR FREE DAY WORLD WIDE
The official world car free day is celebrated on the 22nd.September.
Ever since the first vehicle rolled onto the streets in 1886, the world has had a love-hate relationship with the motor car. Today, with over one billion motor vehicles on the roads around the globe, it sometimes seems as if we cannot escape their defects.
According to The Washington Post, the event “promotes improvement of mass transit, cycling and walking, and the development of communities where jobs are closer to home and where shopping is within walking distance”. Studies showed that for short trips in cities, one can reach more quickly using a bicycle rather than using a car.
While projects along these lines had taken place from time to time on an ad hoc basis starting with the 1973 oil crisis, it was only in October 1994 that a structured call for such projects was issued in a keynote speech by Eric Britton at the International Ciudades Accessible (Accessible Cities) Conference held in Toledo (Spain)
Within two years the first Days were organized in Reykjavík (Iceland), Bath (United Kingdom) and La Rochelle (France), and the informal World Car Free Days Consortium was organized in 1995 to support Car-Free Days worldwide.
The first national campaign was inaugurated in Britain by the Environmental Transport Association in 1997 on the first Tuesday in their Green Transport Week (around 17 June) but in 2000 , car free days went global with a World Carefree Day program launched by Car busters, now World car free Network with the first world event in February 2000 and it is currently celebrated on the 22nd.september.
Many big cities, like Bogota and Jakarta, close their central roads on this day and fill them with walking and cycling events, and smaller car-free events take place around the world. Currently Bogotá holds the world's largest car-free weekday event covering the entire city.
While considerable momentum has been achieved in terms of media coverage, these events turn out to be difficult to organize to achieve real success if there is no significant reorganization of the host city and the government and it is because of this cause that Uganda cycling federation is asking for possible support to make this event successful.
HEAD OF COMMUNICATIONS
UGANDA CYCLING FEDERATION