What is PABIC?
The first Pan-African Bicycle Conference (PABIC) took place from November 21-25th 2001 in Jinja, Uganda.
This event was a starting point for a Pan-African Bicycle Network (PABIN). PABIN has opened a forum-discussion on the internet, contributions are welcome at AfrBikeNet@yahoogroups.com
More than 80 delegates from 30 governments and non-governmental organisations participated in a most exaggerating conference on the topic of "The changing role of the bicycle in the 21st century".
The conference was hosted by BSPW (Bicycle Sponsorship Project & Workshop), a registered charitable in Uganda and its branch FABIO (First African Bicycle Information Office), the lobbying office for the interests of cyclists in Africa and Uganda in particular. E-mail: email@example.com
The conference was the first of its kind on the African continent. It marked a starting point for further exchange of governments, NGOs and initiatives on bicycles and their role as an appropriate means of transport. Please refer to PABIN http://www.ibike.org/pabin for further information.
The participants of the conference decided to have PABIC 2 in Kenya, most likely in Nairobi. Participants from Kenya showed their interest to host it in 2003. Support for this event is strongly needed from international donor agencies as well as local groups.
A brief flashback:
The idea for PABIC was developed way back in 1998 by Richard Kisamaddu, the manager of BSPW and FABIO together with the members of the german-based donor of BSPW, Jugendhilfe Ostafrika e.V. (Youth Aid East Africa) http://www.jugendhilfe-ostafrika.de.
The initial idea was having a regional conference for bicycle-users and advocates, as the role of the bicycle is not valued according to its economic importance by politicians, decision-makers and international donor-agencies.
Especially in Uganda and the neighbouring countries of Kenya, together with Tanzania and Rwanda, the role of the bicycle as a crucial tool for accessing infrastructure is too obvious. You can see thousands of bicycles on the roads and paths serving as the iron donkey for carrying goods for marketing, carrying water and harvest for the household or carrying passengers.
To pay a tribute to this development, which started about 100 years ago with missionaries bringing in the first bicycles, FABIO followed the idea of PABIC for a long time. Originally it was planned to take place in the year 2000, but due to lack of funds, it had to be postponed several times.
Finally it worked out to have PABIC as the support of DED (the german development service), Bread for the World and ADFC (the german cyclists federation) could be secured.
Why having PABIC in Uganda?
An impressive bicycle-culture has been developed by big number of users in the region, e.g. the boda-boda, the african bicycle taxi. The boda-boda is a source of income to many people in East Africa. If it is not the young boys operating a boda-boda for earning their living, it is often seen, that women are renting out their bicycle to the youths to let it ride as a boda-boda. Pictures about the use of bicycles at http://www.bspw.org or at http://www.jessas.de/afribikeindex.html
As the initial step has been taken with PABIC in Uganda, we want as many people and organisations as possible joining us to form an effective lobbying-group for the interests of users of non-motorised means of transport all over Africa.
For further information about the organisations being involved in organising PABIC and PABIN see below: