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    4 FEBRUARY 2019

    Meeting the passionate women

    During the course of three months, several houndreds of applicants have filled forms indicating their interest in partaking in the programme dubbed “Women Moving the City”. A screening of applications have followed, choosing 150 applicants who have shown outstanding perseverance and dedication in their applications. 


    “It’s not as simple as it might sound, judging someone’s dedication based on their written motivation. Some women have been calling and asking for updates several times a week, but looking at solely their application they might only have stated “I want to drive a bus.” We genuinely hope that we will be able to crystallize the 60 most suitable and passionate women.” says Akosua Amponsah, Scania West Africa. A step in this process has been to invite them to an open day, where they will be able to get a better understanding of what the profession actually entails. 

    A thourough understanding by seeing

    Arriving at the premises, the invited women are first welcomed to partake in three different stations. In the first station they are able to see the control room of the facilities, where the dispatch managers work, controlling on computer and on a large screen where all the buses are located along the bus route. The Aayalolo buses run on a time schedule, and are tracked and surveilled by GPS and CCTV inside the buses to optimise the traffic and make the buses a secure place for both driver and passengers. In the next station, bus driver Augustina Addoh, one of the first female drivers of the Aayalolo buses, takes the women on a small trip in one of the buses. Being coached by instructors from GTTC (Government Technical Training Centre) she manages the bus according to instructions. In the third station, two buses are open for inspection. The women are being shown the buses by female GAPTE employees, who knows the inside and out of the buses. 


    “Why did you wait so long?”, says Amina, who has come to the premises in a pursuit of her dream of becoming a bus driver. “We are more than ready!”


    Followed by the stations, the audience is addressed by stakeholders of the project. Mr. Samson Gyamera, the Chief Executive Officer at GAPTE, adressed the women in a heartfelt speech: “I am happy to note that many women have braved the storm and accepted the challenge by breaking many barriers in what was considered male dominated careers. (...) The project aims at empowering women to become professional drivers to enable them become self-reliant and live lives of dignity. The project is to empower these women with economic and social capital to become professional and commercial big bus drivers.” 

    Embrace this opportunity that is given to you”, said Fredrik Morsing, Managing Director of Scania West Africa. "From our experience female drivers are actually better than the male drivers. We would love to see you give them a challenge”.

    The women trained for the BRT in Accra