Uber to engage 1 million female drivers

BY: Kekeli Bina-Agboda

Transport technology hub, Uber, has announced plans to rope in a million female driver-partners globally, including Ghana, to empower the women economically.

The initiative, which is expected to be achieved by 2020, is in line with the company’s global commitment to create a gender balance and empower women to benefit from the service.

Addressing the press in Accra, the General Manager of Uber Sub-Saharan Africa, Mr Alon Lits, stated that the company had started partnering with non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and female institutions globally to organise seminars to capture the interest of women to join the new technology solution for transportation.

He said, “We realise that the company has been dominated by male driver-partners and we want to create the gender balance and also contribute to the development of women globally.”

Mr Lits added that the company would develop a broader strategy to encourage females to come on board and benefit from the economic opportunities Uber offered.

Driver safety

Mr Lits stated that the company was currently working with a facility and acquiring a product that allowed drivers to get cheaper insurance with some financial institutions in the event of any casualties and injuries incurred during driving.

He said the company’s technology platform was secure and had a platform where all riders (customers) had accounts showing their names, email addresses and phone numbers before they could request for a ride.

“So when you accept a request, you’ll know who you’re picking up and so will we,” he explained.

“In many locations around the world, Uber uses technology that anonymises phone numbers to keep contact details confidential. So when you and your rider need to contact each other, your personal information stays private,” he added.

He urged driver-partners to always take extra security measures to ensure safety and prevent passenger attacks.

Mobile money system

Uber had also started talks with telecommunication companies in the country to roll out the Uber mobile money platform, which the general manager said would allow both riders and drivers to make payments in support of a cashless economy.

“This platform will not only benefit riders but driver-partners as well and would most importantly protect the drivers from attacks due to the amount of physical cash they might have on them as they pick passengers,” he said.

Way forward

The manager revealed that Uber would expand its services to Kumasi by the end of September as part of a larger effort to explore potentials in Ghana.