10 July 2018

Gambia: Lorry Drivers Demand New Leadership for Their Union

Hundreds of lorry drivers on Monday paraded in the streets of Banjul asking for the Gambia Transport Control Association's leadership to step down for a new leadership to emerge.

These protesters early Monday morning came to the office of the Transport Association at Picton Street but they found it locked. As a result they apprehended some of the members of the leadership including Jarrga and took them to the main police station for the police to intervene.

According to eye witnesses the lorry drivers were chanting and yelling on top of their voices for the leadership to be changed in front of the police headquarters and the police stopped them and calmed the situation.

It was confirmed that no one was detained by the police.

Omar Touray speaking on behalf of the lorry drivers said that, they are not protesting but they just want to raise their concerns to ensure that the leadership of the Transport Association is changed.

Touray claimed that their term of the leadership has ended since February, and that they have been serving them for 17 years without any improvement.

He also said that Jarrga and his colleagues locked the office without their consent.

"We have not seen any development; since they took office, our car parks are in a very deplorable condition and our welfare as drivers is not taken into consideration," he explained.

Touray also said the drivers pay ten percent of each of their trips to the Association as their dues but nothing has come out of it.

Mr. Touray stated that the Association was banned by the former government for corruption and the case was before court, though proceedings have discontinued when the new government took over.

"We want the government to intervene because we all voted for this change," he remarked

The transport union leadership saga has been here since the former regime and it still couldn't be resolved. This has brought a lot of division and improper coordination amongst the transport union.

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