Zonal System for City Minbuses

Addis Abeba Transport Authority will implement the new system within a month


The Addis Abeba City Transport Authority will require close to 6,000 minibuses with code 3 Oromia Regional State registrations to operate on set routes in a zonal system starting next month, officials said.

Previously, these minibuses were allowed to work in and serve the population of Addis Abeba, as well as serving as cross-country transportation across Oromia Regional State. Minibuses with Addis Abeba registrations were restricted to the city lines and were already using the zonal system. The gesture came as a way to manage the transportation shortage the city is facing. The minibuses will be required to work along their designated routes according to the allocation made by the Authority. The minibuses will be marked with their designated routes.

“We believe this will ease the transportation shortage that the city is facing at the moment,” said an official from the Authority.

This is not the first time the city authority has implemented a zonal system. Six years ago, the system was rolled out across the city, obliging minibuses registered in Addis Abeba to only drive along designated routes. The system was based on one that was operational during the Dergue era.

“We are already preparing a tag that shows the location where each taxi will operate,” said an official involved in the process. “It is about improving the service.”

“The minibuses from Oromia Regional State will be obliged to enter into a contract specifying the time that they can work in Addis,” said Solomon Kidane (PhD), head of the Authority.

Around 40pc of the population of Addis Abeba use motorized modes of transportation, including railways, minibuses, taxis, private vehicles, and motorcycles. The rest of the population, around 60pc, use non-motorized modes of transportation, including walking and bicycles.

Last year, the city introduced two dedicated bicycle lines in the areas known as Bole and Summit. The City Administration also supported small and micro enterprises to purchase bicycles and rent them to users.

The latest reports show that there are 4,034 Code 1 and 4,488 code 3 taxis, 376 Higer buses, 374 kit kit (modified buses), and 1,094 public Anbessa, Sheger and Alliance buses, serving the population of Addis Abeba on a daily basis.

“I don’t think taxis drivers from Oromia will be willing to work only in Addis,” said a taxi driver. “It might create more problems, but if they are willing, it may make a positive change.”

Compared to last year, the number of code 1 taxis has decreased by 37 pc while the number of code 3 taxis and Higer buses increased by six percent and five percent, respectively.

Despite growing public transport facilities, different reports show that there is still a huge gap in filling the demand for transport, which is expected to double in the next four years. Current figures show that there are around 2.5 million people who require transportation in Addis Abeba.

“If the taxis from Oromia Regional State don’t operate in accordance with their contract, they will not work in Addis,” said Solomon.



Published on Feb 11,2017 [ Vol 17 ,No 875]



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