Public transport integration on the cards
INNOVATIONSBy BiztechAfrica - July 1, 2012, 12:31 p.m.
By John Churu, Gaborone, Botswana
A radical initiative by one of Botswana’s foremost technological inventors, Pule Mmolotsi, is set to transform the face of the Botswana Public transport system for the better according to a blueprint shown to biztechafrica.com.
Mmolotsi is the CEO and founder of Olekard, a company that came up with a plan to introduce prepaid public transport system in Botswana come 25th of July 2012. In an exclusive interview with biztechafrica.com, Mmolotsi said: “the Olekard prepaid card will be given for free to commuters. What the commuters will have to do is to load money on to the card from selected participating vendors or agents, and presto! Off they go.”
In order to complete the system, transport owners will have to install a device in their buses which will communicate with the card in question. According to the inventor, the device is called a UID device or Unique Identification Device.
Stakeholders have bought into the grand idea and already, the big transport players in the country such as Seabelo, which operates a cross-border service, AT&T Transport and Motlogelwa, have all accepted the system. The government is a willing buyer as well according to Mmolotsi. “The government has also endorsed the idea from the regulator standpoint. For example the Department of Safety and the department of youth have all agreed in terms of empowerment,” explained Mmolotsi.
This is in addition to an agreement Olekard has with First National Bank (FNB) who will be the custodians of a pool account. The commuters will credit their terminal with virtual money only.
The idea is also touted as an employment creation venture too, as more than 1000 vendors or agents will be employed. In addition, the inventor has already set his sights across the width and breadth of the continent, in the form of a pan-African project. Mmolotsi said he has benchmarked this unique project on similar initiative in London’s oyster, Hong Kong’s octopus and as well as the neighbours South Africa with the recent Gautrain ticketing system.
“This is just a pilot project in Botswana; the aim is meant for Africa as a whole. We are looking for investors and we expect to raise in excess of USD60 million. We have already engaged an internationally recognised accounting firm KPMG because our main aim is to list on the stock exchange,” said the visibly exuberant Mmolotsi.
MORE INNOVATIONS NEWS
Cognisant Computing one of the strongest forces in consumer ITCognisant computing — the next phase of the personal cloud movement — will become one of the strongest forces in consumer-focused IT, according to Gartner. Read More
Botswana approves Innovation FundBotswana's parliament has approved a National Innovation Fund which will provide seed and early stage funding for technology based start-ups and ventures as well as established companies with viable innovation concepts. Read More
MTN unveils another Africa first cooling systemMTN has reaffirmed its commitment to reducing its carbon footprint by unveiling Africa’s first Concentrating Solar Cooling System that will power its energy-hungry data centres. Read More
Big firms challenged on talent developmentKenyan businesses have been urged to use their expertise and set aside resources to train and equip young people to fit in the changing job market. Read More
Tracking chips to tame cattle rustlingPastoralists are set to benefit from a noble mode of taming cattle rustling in Kenya, with the introduction of an innovative electronic tracking chip to keep tabs on cattle. Read More
Microsoft 4Afrika IP Hub to monetise innovation in AfricaMicrosoft has unveiled an online intellectual property (IP) portal called the Microsoft 4Afrika IP Hub, in an effort to create an IP protection culture in Africa. Read More
Groundbreaking technology bringing low vision and blind learners into the lightEdit Microsystems will display their groundbreaking technology, which includes the BrailleNote Apex as well as a scanner that can convert printed text into braille, sound or electronic format, at the upcoming SABC Education African EduWeek in South Africa. Read More
Innovation in Africa, for AfricaFour of the brightest young minds in South Africa’s information technology sector collaborated at Saphila 2014 with the SAP Innovation Centre, to demonstrate what innovative technology can achieve in Africa. Read More
Moepeng’s Alcolock V3 aims for a sober driveAn innovator in Gaborone is bringing to market a gadget aimed at putting an end to drunken driving. Read More
FEATURED STORYWidening ICT skills gap: Cause for concern
Nigeria's FDI gains could be eroded by the widening gap in indigenous skilled ICT manpower, writes Kokumo Goodie.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHKenya rolls out e-extension to improve agriculture
In a bid to curb the overwhelmed number of agricultural extension officers in Kenya, the ministry of agriculture is embracing technology with their introduction of E-Extension services, which are aimed at reaching out to over 7 million farmers annually.
COMPANY NEWSVMware reports second quarter 2014 results
VMware, the global leader in virtualization and cloud infrastructure, today announced financial results for the second quarter of 2014.New Sage ERP X3 version puts business information at your fingertips
Sage ERP Africa has announced the availability of Sage ERP X3 version 7, the latest version of its global business management solution for midsized companies.How the cloud can power entrepreneurship and urbanisation in Africa
Cloud computing is not only fundamentally changing the way business operates, it is also driving a new wave of job creation opportunities, says SAP Africa.