TATOA woes: State opts for amicable solutions

THE Government through bilateral agreement has pledged to resolve challenges facing transporters at borders between Zambia and Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

Taking the stance, the Deputy Minister for Works and Transport, Mr Atupele Mwakibete, during the Annual General Meeting of Tanzania Truck Owners Association (TATOA) over the weekend, further said the two countries enjoy peaceful co-existence and hence, capable of addressing such challenges.

Mr Mwakibete made the assurance following concerns from the TATOA that local transporters were spending some days at the borders to clear immigration procedures and in turn interfere with cargoes’ offloading time.

During the meeting, it was noted that the two countries are major importers of their goods through the Dar es Salaam Port and hence, require no interferences.

Mr Mwakibete said the transport sector has a great contribution to the country’s economic growth and in turn making the government to deal with their challenges.

“This sector is very important for the growth of the country’s economy and the Gross Domestic Product (GDP)… I want to assure you that the government under President Dr Samia Suluhu Hassan will continue to create a good environment, so that you can continue with the transport business more productively,” he pointed out.

Mr Mwakibete further said that the government will continue with registering the truck drivers  on a special system of Land Transport Regulatory Authority (LATRA) to control their movements.

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate truck owners, drivers and other stakeholders in this sensitive sector for minimising strikes and instead resolve conflicts amicably,” he added.

Elaborating, the Deputy Minister thanked the ministry in collaboration with TATOA and other stakeholders for minimising demonstrations, saying they cause huge losses to the government.

Adding: “I would like to take this opportunity to ask the truck drivers in the country to continue working and if there are any problems, then they should opt for legal procedures and involve the government as well as the truck owners’ association.

“The Port of Dar es Salaam has continued to improve its systems and time spent by ships during clearance has also decreased from 15 days to five, and this enhances efficiency.”

On her part, the Chairperson of TATOA, Ms Angelina Ngalula, said that they were grateful to the sixth phase government for developing projects and promoting economic diplomacy, adding that it is now the turn of the transport stakeholders to support President Samia.

“Our President is fighting for our country to become the centre for transport business in East Africa and the Sub-Saharan countries…now it is the responsibility of the private and public sectors to work together so that we can achieve our goals,” she said.

In his address, the Marketing Officer of GF Trucks & Equipment Ltd, Mr Jumaa Lukolo said the company would continue selling new large vehicles to stakeholders and traders to enhance productivity in the sector.

“The FAW and Hong Yang cars are currently assembled locally in Kibaha-based factory with the same quality and the GF has also initiated an emergency service to assemble also cargo vehicles…the services are available in different regions and borders in the country including Morogoro, Dodoma, Mbeya, Tunduma and Kigoma,” he added.

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