Bus drivers across Tanzania went on strike on Monday for the second time in a month, paralyzing transport in the East African nation.
Passengers who had bought their tickets one day before in most parts of the country, including the commercial capital Dar es Salaam, were forced to cancel their travel.
Shaaban Mdemu, deputy chairman of Drivers Association of Tanzania, said the drivers were pressing the government to ensure that bus owners provided them with acceptable working contracts.
“We also want the government to be clear on its position that drivers holding driving licenses classes E, C3, C2, C1 and C attend a re-fresher course at any recognized institution and be re- examined thereafter,” he said.
Last month, the drivers engaged in a half-day strike pressing for similar demands, and resumed providing services after Minister for Labor and Employment Gaudensia Kabaka, assured them that the re-fresher program was called off.
Samuel Sitta, the Minister for Transport, told a news conference that Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda has formed a 13- member special task force to look into problems facing the road transport sector and find lasting solutions.
On April 9, bus drivers across Tanzania went on strike, bringing the country to a standstill as thousands of passengers were stranded at bus stations.
The drivers were opposed to a new set of regulations limiting up-country buses to 80 kilometers per hour and the demand for a mandatory driving course for all those renewing their licenses.
The move came following concerns over frequent road accidents that kill innocent Tanzanians. An average of 4,000 people perish countrywide annually due to road accidents. Enditem