By Isatou Kanyi
Gambia Transport Union has called on the Gambia Government to consider their demands to ease up restrictions on the number of passengers their vehicles are licensed to carry, failure which they will declare a nationwide sit down strike on 22 June 2020.
The Gambia Government restricted commercials and private vehicles from carrying their licensed number of passengers they are supposed to carry as part of measures to curb Covid-19.
At the press conference at the Union’s Office in Banjul Omar Ceesay – the President of the Gambia Transport Union described the relaxation of COVID-19 as unfair to drivers.
Mr Ceesay advised that Government should consider the use of face mask and other hygienic measures, adding: “We have been crying out about the issue of Garages across the country. We deem it fit that the Government should allow the commercial passenger vehicles to carry what they are licensed to carry, because all the others that are permitted possess more risk to the society than the commercial passenger vehicles,” he said.
Mr Ceessay recollected that they wrote letters to the concern line Ministries, including Transport, Justice, and Health, as well the National Assembly Select Committee; noting among others that certain restrictions were made by the Government through the Emergency Power Regulations.
Mr Ceesay said prior to all these engagements when President Adama Barrow declared that drivers should carry 50% of what they are licensed to carry, they heard rumours of planned demonstration by drivers across the country; “but we stood on our feet and make sure all drivers across the country adhered to the regulations.”