East Africa: Dar Suspends EAC Vehicle Load Control Act Enforcement

THE Government has suspended implementation of East African Community (EAC) Vehicle Load Control Act, 2016 that became effective in the country on January 1, 2019.

Permanent Secretary in the Ministry for Works, Transport and Communication Elius Mwakalinga said here yesterday that the Act enforcement will instead start on March 1, this year.

Architect Mwakalinga said the postponement of implementation of the legislation has been triggered by the fact that when the law came into force this month, fitting of new vehicle weighing system at weighbridges all over the country was not yet completed.

"That led to a situation where there was use of two Acts-the old and new-at the same time, leading the public to confusion," said the PS.

He said that in line with that logic and bearing in mind how important it is to raise awareness to stakeholders about changes in the systems as well as about completion in installation of the new system, procedures in the old law will be observed until March 1.

The new law covers all six member states of the EAC as a means to control vehicle loads with weight limitation in axle of super single tyres to 8.5 down from 10 tonnes. The Government decision will be a slight relief to the Transporters Association of Tanzania (TAT) that was seeking the Act to be suspended for at least a year.

TAT Vice Chairman, Mr Omar Kiponza had requested the government to suspend the Act on grounds that the volume of transportation business between Southern African Development Community (SADC) and Tanzania is huge (80 per cent), arguing that the country will suffer hugely in business.

He wanted the suspension of the law to give transporters ample time to get out of business the unwanted trucks.

However, The Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, Engineer Isaac Kamwelwe had replied that an agreement to have standardised vehicle axle load control was among EAC and SADC countries. He said all were on the same line to have the standard in vehicle axle load control but the only difference was that the SADC member countries are being guided by a memorandum instead of a law hence there was no harm to any state.

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