Expats in Addis Ababa forced to abandon their motorbikes

Published:  21 Jun at 6 PM
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Motorcycling expats living, working and volunteering in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa will need to find alternative transport options from July 7.

Motorcycles are a cheap, convenient more of transportation for locals and expats alike, but their use is about to be banned by order of the government. The reason given is that increasing number of criminals are using motorbikes to commit crimes such as robbery and assault. The only exceptions to the ban will be motorbikes used for postal deliveries and those in use by members of the capital’s many diplomatic missions. According to Mayor Takele Uma, a week-long study has revealed many links between motorcycle usage and the city’s criminal gangs.

In addition to the ban on thus most popular means of personal transport, freight vehicles will also be banned during the hours of daytime, a measure introduced to hopefully cure the city’s rising traffic congestion. Although Ethiopia is one of Africa’s safest countries, both for locals and the expat population, statistics of violent crimes are now on the increase, causing concern in both communities.

The African country isn’t a favourite focus for expat professionals looking to further their careers, but Addis Ababa is a hub for a number of international organisations as well as United Nations offices, both of which attract expat professional workers. In addition, many NGOs require volunteers, and English teachers are especially welcome in the capital as well as in the mainly agricultural highland regions. The country’s climate is temperate, and the enormously varied ethnic groups make for a multicultural experience rare in this ultra-modern world.
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