EAC transport ministers meet today to resolve border cargo delays

Tuesday May 26 2020


Truck drivers and their assistants wait for Covid-19 tests at Namanga border post on May 12. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE 

By Business Daily

East Africa Community (EAC) transport ministers are set to meet Tuesday to try to resolve cargo delays and other challenges being experienced by truck drivers at border points.

The ministers are later in the day expected to issue a joint statement on Covid-19 testing protocols to be adopted by all member states amid tensions caused by truck drivers protesting disputed results, a lengthy wait for results or harassment.

“What we are doing is ensuring that mechanisms that protect citizens of the EAC are put in place and movement of cargo still continues,” Mercy Mwangangi, Chief Administrative Secretary at Kenya's Ministry of Health, said yesterday.

“So tomorrow there will be a more comprehensive statement from all the EAC ministers on how we will deal with the issue moving forward.”

Kenyan truck drivers Monday staged a protest on the Bungoma-Malaba highway citing mistreatment by Ugandan authorities.

Their Tanzanian counterparts have also decried delayed cargo movement into Kenya owing to Covid-19 testing. Kenya recorded 72 new Covid-19 cases yesterday, bringing the total to 1,286. Total recoveries stand at 402 after nine more patients were discharged. The death toll hit 52 after one person succumbed.