Attacking trucks is bad for the economy and the price of goods - experts

Attacking trucks is bad for the economy and the price of goods – experts

“We know there is a problem in the trucking sector and trucks are the logistics that carry all the goods and drive the economy. We no longer have railways, so what we rely on to get from one place to another is trucks.

I don’t understand why the government doesn’t prioritize it. We seem to react, when such attacks happen, we say we will plan and as soon as things start to relax, we forget about plans and forget about execution.

“We always nap in our pants and it’s costing a lot of stress on our economy as we try to get it going.”

Mkhithoni also added that the government was also “very good at putting pen to paper but when it comes to execution there is none”.

In June last year, the government and various organizations signed The Action Team Implementation Plan document would ensure minimum employment of foreigners as truck drivers through the introduction of stricter laws around visa and driver’s license requirements among other things.

However, according to All Truckers Forum and Allied SA ATDF Secretary ASA Sifiso Nyathi, nothing has been implemented.

We have taken these issues up with the government and they have never been settled. They are just people talking but nothing is being done, companies are still hiring foreign nationals.”

Nyathi said he did not know about the recent truck attacks, adding that whenever an attack occurred, the government would blame his forum.

Part of what was said in the document seen by Sowetan was confirmation of driver’s licenses and professional driving permits for foreign drivers, identification of invalid foreign driver’s licenses and that all trucks transporting goods for gain or on behalf of a third party must register with the negotiation board.

When approached for comment on how far the Department of Transportation has gone in implementing the plan, spokesperson Colin Msibi could only say: “The department continues to work through the task force appointed by the interministerial committee and the industry to find solutions to meet the challenges in the trucking and freight industry. We’re on the right track in terms of collectively finding those solutions.”

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