Traffic flow at Malaba border resumes as truck drivers agree to end sit-down strike

Movement of trucks at Malaba border resumed on Tuesday, May 26, after truck drivers agreed to end their five-day strike.

The drivers had used their trucks to block the road from Kenya, arguing that the standard operating procedures put in place by the Kenya and Uganda governments were a violation of their rights. The truck drivers were enduring long hours of waiting at the border to have their coronavirus test results.

The truck drivers agreed to end the strike after the Kenyan authorities met owners of the trucks and threatened to take legal action against them for blocking the international road.

After their meeting, owner of cargo trucks under their ambrella Kenya Transporters Association later had a separate meeting with their drivers and requested them to loosen their earlier position.

The border then opened at around 3 pm after the Kenyan authorities ordered removal of fuel tanker trucks that had been parked to block both entry and exit lanes at the Kenyan border.

However although the border has finally opened, the movement is still slow.

Authorities said trucks destined to Kenya from Uganda will have to wait until the jam from Kenya is done with.

Mr. James Malinzi, the Eastern regional manager Uganda Revenue Authority said some of the trucks have developed mechanical problems that need to be addressed and this might affect the speed.

He said during the strike, drivers parked three lanes that stretched over 50 kilometers that require to be cleared before trucks destined to Kenya from Uganda can get space to cross.

“For now we shall concentrate clearing the trucks entering Uganda there after clearing the jam we shall now allow those going to Kenya to start moving because we do not have any alternative” said Mr. Malinzi.

He said the current situation now means jam at Uganda will continue building until the one in Kenya is handled.

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