Papua New Guinea
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Driving a cab to a better future

Taxi driver and young father Junior Walo drives his cab to save up for a brighter future.

It is a future he envisions where he can return to school to complete his education.

Mr Walo said that for some it is their passion to be a permanent taxi driver to make a living.

But he believes being a taxi driver throughout his entire life should not be the end for him as he aims to set a good foundation for his son.

Junior Walo with his son.

“The primary concern of me driving around the city is to make money to pay my school fees and complete my education journey,” says Junior Walo.

“I chose to be a taxi driver to make money for school fees and get educated because I don’t want my son to struggle in the future like I did.

“I must at least make more money to upgrade my marks and later attend college after next year so this will be a real satisfaction in my life. 

Mr Walo grew up with his mother in Morea village, Pangia after his father passed on when he was a teenager. After his father’s passing, he was unable to find financial assistance to upgrade his marks.

He then decided to leave his mother at home and came down to Port Moresby to look for opportunities.

His first job was as a bus crew for a route 13 bus here in the nation’s capital.

“I came to Port Moresby after completing grade 12 in Pangia Secondary and ended up being bus crew for bus route 13.

He still wanted to complete his education then, however, the pay he was receiving as a bus crew was not enough so he taught himself to drive.

“The concern was to continue my education but little money I used to get paid from being bus crew is not enough, so I continued for three (3) years until I learnt how to drive,” he said.

Walo got married along the way and had a son and life was a bit tough to manage being a bus crew. Being a taxi driver is a bit relief for him.

“I will hustle around the city to make enough money to look after my family and also pay for my school fee starting next year.

“I’m driving around the city for almost two (2) years and sometimes I have faced challenges as in hold-ups at night, not enough customers, and more but I kept pushing through knowing that there will be a glorious day sooner,” he said.

Walo drives a taxi under Karai Taxi Service based at the Boroko Stop and Shop and opposite Waigani Central Government Office where mothers used to do sales.

Most times, you will see him busy cleaning his taxi in his usual areas while waiting for customers.

Junior Walo cleaning his taxi while waiting for customers at Waigani, opposite Central Government Office.