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
Africa’s technology hubs on the rise – VPThe vice president of Botswana says innovation hubs play an important role in boosting science and technology. Read More
Innovation Prize for Africa 2014 finalists announcedThe African Innovation Foundation (AIF) has announced the finalists of the prestigious Innovation Prize for Africa (IPA) 2014. Read More
Connected Africa winners recognisedGoogle has presented awards to the five top entrants in its Connected Africa competition. Read More
Google, LG to unveil Android watchSoon tech-savvy Kenyans with passion for the Android operating system will be able to wear a wrist watch that does more than tell time and date. Read More
Philips to establish Research and Innovation Hub in KenyaRoyal Phlips has announced the establishment of its Africa Innovation Hub in Nairobi, Kenya, to be the centre for developing innovations “in Africa - for Africa” . Read More
Rwanda, World Bank host science, technology forumThe Government of Rwanda and the World Bank are co-hosting a high-level forum on Higher Education for Science, Technology and Innovation in Kigali this week. Read More
Kenya goes hi-tech in anti-poaching warKenyan wildlife authorities are bringing in advanced technologies to protect endangered wildlife from poachers. Read More
Smart Home Revenues to reach $71 billion by 2018A new report from Juniper Research forecasts that revenues generated from Smart Home services are set to reach a global market value of $71 billion by 2018, rising from $33 billion last year. Read More
African students sign up for Go Green challengeStudents from Engineering and Business Schools, Master's and MBA Programmes in Africa have until 15 February to sign up for the Go Green challenge. Read More
IBM fuels innovation and entrepreneurship in AfricaIBM is further expanding its operations across Africa with the opening of two new IBM Innovation Centers in Lagos, Nigeria and Casablanca, Morocco. Read More
FEATURED STORYKenyan shift to Green Economy would generate USD 45bn by 2030
Kenya’s transition to a green economy could produce major economic benefits equivalent to an estimated USD 45 billion by 2030, a new study shows.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHE-waste threatens Ghana’s beaches
Many beaches in Ghana, already stressed by pollution and poor maintenance, are now facing a new threat: e-waste.
COMPANY NEWSFurther African expansion for Phoenix
Phoenix Distribution, a leading broad-based distributor on the African continent, has expanded its office in Nairobi, Kenya, in a move to better serve its partners in East ...