Several transport operators plying Uganda to Kenya
route, have decided to suspend their operations as Kenyans vote for their
Tomorrow 9th August, Kenyans are electing their new
leaders, but though the country didn’t close its borders, cargo and passenger
transporters from Uganda are to wait to go across till the election process
Charles Mwebembezi, the chairperson of the Uganda
freight forwarders association, says that they are in fear because they don't
know what might happen after the elections, and because of that they can’t
gamble with life and property which can be saved just by a mere delay of some
According to Mwebembezi, the Kenyan government has
assured them of security while in transit from the port to the point of exit,
but he says they cannot take chances, based on the history of Kenyan polls,
adding that though the port and borders are still open, they are not moving any
cargo for at least three days, just to monitor the conditions.
//Cue in; “The major concern…….//
Cue out; ……… see what happens,”//
Kenneth Ayebare, the chairperson of the Uganda Cargo
Consolidators Association, says under such unpredictable conditions, some cargo
had started to go through the central corridor however it is quite expensive
and the easier solution was to hold their operations than risk, adding that the
last trucks they expect are those reaching the Ugandan border points today and
that any track to move must have cargo insurance.
Ayebare said: “We have advised all our drivers to halt operations
as we monitor the situation, and the last trucks we are expecting are those that
reach Busia and Malaba today, while those in transit must have cargo
insurance. Though the Kenya ports authority has promised to give us a waiver on demurrage for the time the country will be in elections, it’s just a promise
which is not in writing.”
The situation is not different even for passenger transport service providers, and several key players in this sector have also
halted operations till further notice.
Yazid Kalangwa, a driver with Buscar transport
company, says the fear of Kenya’s election aftermath, has been on for the last
one week, and the number of passengers from Uganda to Kenya reduced to less
than half, wheres those coming in multiplied. However, many Kenyans
staying in Uganda also traveled in large numbers going back home to
take part in the elections.
He adds that starting today his bosses have ordered
him to stay at home until he is called back to duty after the Kenyan election
process is done, adding that they have also informed their customers of the
//Cue in; “Even now nebikola ………//
Cue out; ……. bakasitoma baffe twabategazezza,”//
Solomon Nsimire the chairperson of the Uganda Bus
Operators Association, told URN that as an association they did not come up
with a common stand about the situation, and the discussion was left to individual
companies to take a stand.
//Cue in; “Of course their …………//
Cue out;……….. about the security,”//
Since the post-election violence in the 2007-2008 Kenyan
elections, whenever this country goes to the polls, Uganda is highly cautious
and puts up several measures to avoid the spillover.