New Vision (Kampala)

Uganda: Are Male Drivers Just Bullies?

Many men often say that women are bad drivers. Apart from the cultural, sociological and psychological implications, the gender-driving disparity needs to be checked.

Most men believe that their driving skills are superior to those of women.

That is why they mistreat women on the road. Men want to overtake women, and at junctions, they do not give women way.

According to Grace Nambusi, who drives a Land Rover Discovery and has been behind the wheel for over 10 years, men seem to be more proficient than women at certain driving tasks.

"However, this slight edge in ability does not give them the right to mistreat us," she says.

Nambusi adds that men, who normally mistreat women are mostly drivers of public transport. Some accidents men get involved in is a result of their risky behaviour.

There is a battle of men and women on the roads. Whenever men see women behind the wheel, they blame them for being slow.

Sarah Nambuya, who drives a Toyota Prado, says men should stop such stereotypes.

"How many men can challenge Susan Muwonge or Alice Nyambura, who used to drive the Gaaga buses?" Nambuya says.

David Magala, a taxi driver, says, "We do not want to bully women, but they cause traffic jam and even drive slowly."

It is hard to say women are better drivers although statistics show they take more precaution.

According to Magara, women take longer to pass their driving test than men, the reason men tend to think women are bad drivers.

A woman needs about 20 lessons to pass the test, compared to men, who may take about 10 or 15 lessons.

Noah Tuyishime, an officer is in charge of accidents at Central Police Station (CPS), says both women and men qualify to be at the same level of driving if they go for the test and get driving permits.

"Careless driving is about personality and inadequate training, it is not gender-related," Tuyishime explain .

Road safety

Some women claim that careless driving convictions, speeding offences and neglecting traffic signs are done by men.

The reason why men bully women is that women are careful while driving.

Some say women tend to be bullied because they drive automatic cars and that's one sign, which shows they are bad drivers.

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