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All photos: DW
Transportation modalities “My Loves”, “Ten Years” and “Smart Kikas” are fighting for customers in the Mozambican capital, where private vehicles seek daily to satisfy the great demands of the population.
The ‘owners’ of transport
“Smart Kikas” (buses), “My Loves” and “Ten Years” (minibus) are the nicknames given to different forms of transport in Maputo. In fact, they are considered the transportation in the capital, the Maputo Municipal Transport Company being to all extents and purposes inoperative.
“Ten years” vehicles (minibuses) are popular because of their flexibility, easy manoeuvrability and lack of delays. However, they are the most uncomfortable due to the proximity of the seats, which particularly punishes the taller person. The minibus driver brooks no dispute from customers and even creates embarrassment to traffic. For drivers, anything goes to get that one extra passenger in.
These trucks are waiting to carry goods of the people shopping in Xikheleni, one of Maputo’s largest informal markets. When customers are scarce or revenue is low, these vehicles moonlight carrying people in the city centre during rush hour.
There are times when the “My Loves” serve as “good Samaritans”. When the budget doesn’t stretch to the “smarts” or the minibuses, these vans turn out to be the cheapest way to transport guests, especially for weddings. On Saturdays, such scenarios are common.
Private vehicles also carry people, as you can see in this image. It is not one of the three types of transport already described, but the truth is that the general transport crisis forces people to engage in this type of business. It takes muscle to get transport in the capital.
In one of the terminals in Maputo, we see the buses called “Smart kikas”, a clear allusion to the mobile phones of this brand which are so abundant in Mozambique. Despite the acquisition of more “Smart kikas” for transport in the private sector, the transportation problem is still far from over.
Fight to enter
This image shows people waiting for transport. When one arrives, a fight breaks out for space in the vehicle. The wait can be long.
The “My Loves” are another solution found for the desperate passengers at the bus stop, who just want to get to work at all costs. The central government ended up surrendering to the “My Loves” over the fundamental role they play in transportation.
This type of transportation isn’t very common in the capital. These vehicles usually carry the merchandise of the ladies called “magwevas” (who buy in bulk), but when there’s a chance to play the ‘Chapa’, there they are.
The interior of the “Smart kika” even offers a little comfort to the passengers. Passenger safety is a concern, even when the vehicle is full. Many city dwellers do not like buses because they take so long to get to their destination.Source: Deutsche Welle