Public transport integration on the cards

BOTSWANA

-
Image: Pule Mmolotsi. By John Churu
Pule Mmolotsi

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.   



Share the News

Get Daily Newsletter

comments powered by Disqus

MORE BOTSWANA NEWS

Musical chairs in the BTCL boardroom

Change has come for the Botswana Telecommunication Corporation Limited Board of Directors with the appointment of its new crop of board members, led by legal expert Daphne Matlakala.  Read More

Radio sky jumps for charity

The Mochudi Rehabilitation Centre for the Blind is the beneficiary of a sky jump for charity carried out by two radio presenters and a producer from Gabz FM radio station.  Read More

Environmentalists welcome improved technology

Participants in a recent Monitoring For Environment and Security in Africa (MESA) conference in Botswana were upbeat about the new technologies that MESA is harnessing.  Read More

Stanbic advises holiday makers

As Botswana enters two days of holidays, Stanbic has urged people not to let their guard down on financial security. Read More

Bytes, NCR and Barclays in ATM deal

Bytes Managed Solutions, the exclusive distributor of NCR technology solutions in Southern Africa had signed a deal with Barclays Bank of Botswana (BBB) for the installation of intelligent cash deposit ATMs. Read More

Education Minister: ICT vital in schools

Botswana’s Acting Minister of Education and Skills Development, Mokgweetsi Masisi, has called for an increased uptake of ICTs in all schools in the country.  Read More

Botswana approves Innovation Fund

Botswana'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

Innovation Hub introduces new offices

The Botswana Innovation Hub (BIH) has opened two new offices to services its wider clientele base.  Read More

Botswana, Germany, France in ICT/cultural exchange

The Botswana College of Open and Distance Learning (BOCODOL) is in the second year of an educational exchange that involves students from France and Germany.  Read More

Botswana college signs MoU with Swaziland

The Ministry of Health of the Kingdom of Swaziland has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Botswana’s Boitekanelo College to formalise bilateral cooperation.  Read More

PRESS OFFICES

Sage ERP AfricaSAP AfricaSage Pastel AccountingTrust PayVMWareSamsung ElectronicsMitsumi DistributionPhoenix DistributionSage HR AfricaMTN BusinessSchneider ElectricMultichoice

FEATURED STORY

Widening ICT skills gap: Cause for concernWidening 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.

IN DEPTH

Kenya rolls out e-extension to improve agricultureKenya 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.