WINDHOEK- Workers are still commuting to work in open trucks despite a warning from the transport minister some months ago about the dangers of trucks as a mode of transport.
In March this year the Minister of Works and Transport, Erkki Nghimtina, said government was to introduce a law to prohibit the transport of construction workers in the back of trucks.
But a random inspection by New Era this week ascertained contrary to Nghimtina’s directive workers still commute to work in the back of trucks.
The minister’s announcement was made following the escalating number of road accidents involving trucks.
“This is a very delicate issue, but to my surprise nothing has been done or seems to have been done to mitigate this issue while everyday there is an increase in the number of trucks. Wake up at 06h00 in the morning and you will see how many trucks and open vans are transporting people – the situation keeps worsening,” said Uapingena Karuaera of the Namibia Public Passenger Transport Association (NPPTA)
Karuaera said his organization has sent several proposals to the Ministry of Works and Transport but have not yet received any response.
“As NPPTA we don’t know what to do because we have tried our best but nothing has come forth – after all, it is the minister himself that announced a new law should be gazetted but he is not working on fulfilling his words,” said Karuaera.
However, Chief of the City Police, Abraham Kanime, said his office has already complied with all the legalities and handed it to the relevant officials and in addition, he said, the implementation of the law is progressing well and will soon be enforced.
“I wish I could say it becomes a law by tomorrow – it is just because there are procedures to follow but I can assure you it will soon be put in practice,” he said.
He said currently there is no law that prohibits the transportation of people in trucks – only dippers are not allowed to carry or transport people,. As a result he cautioned those using trucks for transportation to ensure the safety of passengers is observed.
By Obrein Simasiku