“The best way to start is to start now – we think only the union let’s us start now” – John Ssemujjo, KAMBA
On July 15th 2015, the Kampala Metropolitan Boda Boda Association (KAMBA), an association of around 20,000 motorcycle riders (“boda boda”) that operate in and around Kampala, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with ITF-affiliated Amalgamated Transport & General Workers’ Union, Uganda (ATGWU).
The MoU is an affiliation agreement between the association and the union which aims to give KAMBA members access to union training activities as well as formalising a mandate for the union to “negotiate, lobby and advocate” in the interests of KAMBA members.
The MoU between KAMBA and ATGWU brings the number of informal workers’ associations affiliated to ATGWU to nine, which according to the union brings its potential membership to about 70,000. This process of affiliating associations to ATGWU is part of the union’s innovative strategy for organising workers in the informal transport economy.
According to the ATGWU, the success of this strategy has given a new and revitalised dimension to their organising work, because now the union is getting more appeals from informal workers’ associations seeking affiliation and union representation.