Meet Akua, the female Uber driver challenging the men in Ghana

Meet Akua, the female Uber driver challenging the men in Ghana

The whole idea of gender equality is to allow women the chance and tools to enter zones exclusively perceived as reserved for men.

With this in the background a female Ghanaian Uber driver is challenging the status quo of male commercial drivers in Ghana.

Rita Owusu Obeng, or Akua as she is popularly called, is one of the handful of female Uber drivers in Ghana. The chances of you meeting her for your ride is rather very little.

But as reports, Akua did not care about the male-dominance in the collection of Ghanaian Uber drivers. She just wanted to earn a living and potentially inspire other women into believing they can do it too.

Obeng originally studied to be a fashion designer. But she took the chance to be an Uber driver when the opportunity presented itself.

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Akua the Uber driver
Rita Akua Owusu Obeng. Photo credit:
Source: UGC

There are a lot of stereotypes about female drivers. But perhaps, for cultural reasons, the stereotypes held in the Western world differ from the ones held in Ghana and maybe, Africa.

It is not hard to find an American comedian joking about how horrible female drivers are. In Ghana, people speak of how slow or "too careful" women drivers are.

The Ghanaian stereotype is even chipped into selling cars previously owned by women. Sellers say, "A woman used this car" just to give an impression that it was well-managed.

So what do facts say aside people's beliefs? Studies by Ole Johansson from the Institute of Transport Economics in Norway show women are less likely to be distracted while driving than men.

Another research done in the UK showed that 84% of 1,840 drink-driving offenders were men with another 69% of men making the list of 1,703,079 speeding offences.

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Akua is not looking at these statistics maybe because they are not from Ghana. She just wants to do what she loves doing and would not want to be shut out because she is a woman.

She adds that: “I haven’t had any (peculiar) challenges but some of the riders are very rude and don’t give us respect."

(Others) treat me very well and most of them are happy when a lady is driving them and they say they feel safe too."

She wants more women like herself to drive too. Akua's hope is what the International Women's Day celebrates every year.

She ends on a powerful declaration: “What a man can do, a woman can do better. We should all try and give men a good competition in all aspects."

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