Uganda’s Owiny cycles from Kampala to Nairobi in six days to advocate for safe cycling lanes

In the heart of East Africa, where bustling cities grapple with sprawling urbanization and the challenges of mobility, one man embarked on a journey that not only defied expectations but also championed a greener, more sustainable future.

Hakim Owiny, a student at the Kampala International University in Kansanga rode a bike for six days for a distance of 655 kilometres from Uganda’s capital to Nairobi in advocacy for safe cycling lanes.

Owiny who met with leaders at the Africa Climate Summit in Kenya handed to them a message of greener mobility for Africa.

“My journey is a bold message to our policymakers to make safe cycling lanes integrated in the road network and it will be safe for riding to work and save the environment from pollution,” he said as he embarked on the journey from Kampala.

The dedicated community leader and advocate for environmental responsibility, rode an electric bicycle from Kampala to Nairobi, spanning a distance of over 650 kilometers in just six days, a remarkable feat not only showcased the potential of electric mobility but also shone a light on a new and disruptive mode of transportation in the region.

Before being sponsored by eBee, an electric bicycle company, Owiny had initially planned to make the journey on a non-electric bike, which would have taken considerably longer. However, with eBee’s electric bicycle, he found himself cruising effortlessly through challenging terrains, reducing his travel time significantly.

By promoting the accessibility of electric bikes and encouraging people to embrace them as an environmentally conscious mode of transport, he says he sees the potential for a significant reduction in the number of fossil fuel-powered vehicles on the road.

To those skeptical about the feasibility of long-distance journeys on electric bikes, Owiny has straight forward message that it is unquestionably feasible.

“My journey from Kampala to Nairobi is a testament to this fact. Just like any machine, electric bikes require proper handling, and with responsible usage, they can cover impressive distances across varying terrains,” he says.

He adds that many African cities are grappling with crippling traffic congestion and air pollution and that by making electric bikes more accessible and engaging policymakers to create safe cycling lanes transportation can be revolutionalised, reducing traffic jams, and mitigating air pollution.

Owiny says throughout his journey, he engaged with communities, allowing people to experience electric cycling and that the reactions were overwhelmingly positive, as individuals admired the ease of cycling, comfort, and elegant design of electric bikes.

“As a leader and now recognized as an e-mobility ambassador in Uganda, I intend to continue advocating for electric mobility, striving for a future where the majority of people can access and adopt this environmentally smart means of transport,” he says.

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