Police and sister security agencies have started registration of all boda boda motorcycles and riders countrywide in a move to curb the high crime rates in the motor vehicle industry.
In the registration, the security agencies will capture the bio-data of each motorcyclist, the owner of the motorcycle, the motorcycle's licence plate, chassis and engine numbers.
The Director of Police Crime Intelligence, Col Chris Sserunjoji Ddamulira, confirmed the boda boda registration, which he said will help them to account for each motorcycle and every motorcyclist in the country.
"There have been several incidents where boda boda cyclists are attacked by criminals, riders killed and motorcycles stolen. We can't even tell where they operate from and who their relatives are. But after registering them, we shall be able to help the motorcyclists when their motorcycles have been stolen since they will be in our database," Col Ddamulira said.
This is the first time all boda boda cyclists countrywide will be registered.
Kampala Capital City Authority attempted to register motorcycles in the city but the project was marred with violence, and government halted it. The number of boda boda cycles and cyclists in the country still remain unknown.
At least 5,096 motorcycles were either stolen or robbed last year. Less than 5 per cent of the lost motorcycles were recovered in the same period. Some of the robberies were alleged to have been committed by members of Boda Boda 2010 association, which was later dismantled by the army and its leaders prosecuted in the court martial.
Col Ddamulira said each motorcyclist will give details of where he or she operates from and the stage he or she is attached to.
"When a crime is committed in an area and we carry out an operation, we shall be able to know who works in that area and who doesn't," he said.
The criminals have also been using boda boda cycles as getaway vehicles after murders and other crimes.
Nearly all incidents in which Muslim clerics have been killed, the armed criminals used motorcycles.
The same happened during the murder of Assistant Inspector General of Police Andrew Kaweesi, Assistant Superintendent of Police Muhammad Kirumira and Arua Municipality legislator Ibrahim Abiriga. After the killings, heavy motorcycles in Kampala Metropolitan Police Area were registered by security agencies.
Last month, police carried out an operation targeting hubs were stolen motorcycles are dismantled and their parts sold to unsuspected buyers in Kampala Metropolitan Policing area and other urban areas in the country.
At least 200 motorcycles were recovered and hundreds of those selling stolen property arrested and prosecuted.
Police spokesman Fred Enanga said the operation was meant to stop criminals from benefitting from the theft of motorcycles.