The Monitor (Kampala) Long-distance truck drivers yesterday went on strike at Malaba border post, in protest against the poor state of the custom’s parking yard, paralysing trade between Uganda and Kenya. The Chairman of the Great Lakes Long Distance Truck Drivers Union, Mr Nicholas Mbugwa, told Daily Monitor that the strike followed a meeting last Friday over the state of the yard as well as the poor state of the road which has led to several accidents. “Trucks are overturning and breaking down every day at that yard,” Mr Mbugwa said on phone from Nairobi. “It is becoming very costly to drivers, importers and transporters because of the cumbersome experience they go through at that yard.”
The strike, which led to a queue of trucks more than a kilometre long, will come as an embarrassment to the government, which is hosting a regional summit to harmonise and coordinate trade, customs and infrastructure development in the region.
It will also cost both governments lost revenue from customs duties that the trucks would have paid as they crossed the border and comes shortly after Kampala and Nairobi extended opening hours at the border crossings to facilitate trade.
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