Truckers to get regional identity cards
All regional truck drivers will be issued with international transporters’ service cards to ease their movement and avoid impediments they have been meeting in their activities.
Apparently, drivers have been using nationally issued cards, commonly known as mother cards, but the new document is fitted with features indicating all five East African countries.
These cards are carried mainly by transporters shuttling to and from ports of Mombasa and Dar es Salaam, among other destinations, and are used alongside driving licenses.
Other member states had already started issuing the new cards. Rwandans are set to acquire theirs soon according to an official.
The cards are issued by International Transporters’ Federation (ITF), an international trade union federation of transport workers’ unions.
In an interview, Omar Burangwahe the national coordinator of ITF mentioned that it was imperative for Rwanda to focus on welfare of drivers since the country is landlocked.
“All the regional business communities are eyeing Rwanda but it is landlocked, which is why we are trying to see how to ease the transporters’ operations,” he said.
The new card possesses the phone numbers of all ITF offices in member states that will help drivers seek assistance in case they encounter any problem, he said.
“For example, now if a Tanzanian driver gets any problem in Rwanda, he can directly call our offices here in Kigali for immediate intervention,” said Burangwahe
Rwandan truck drivers have always decried the existing insecurity in the region especially in Tanzania and Kenya making their movement and business dreadful yet they did not have anyone to turn to since they didn’t have the document.
The Executive Secretary of the Rwanda truck drivers’ association, Theodore Murenzi, said acquisition of a regional card signifies the solidarity among the transporters and that it will also create more cohesion among the drivers.
The cards will be valid for six months after which one will need to renew theirs.
Contact email: eric.kabeera[at]newtimes.co.rw