From Awareness Times Newspaper in Freetown

Local News
In Sierra Leone, Motor Driversí Union Formed at Ports
By Mohamed Kanu
Sep 28, 2010, 17:18

Container section drivers at the Queen Elizabeth II quay over the weekend launched a branch of the Sierra Leone Drivers and General Transport Workersí Union. The ceremony was held at the Safer Welfare Complex, Lower Savage Square in Freetown.¬† This move is in compliance with the mandate to be incorporated into the main stream of union activities as provided for in the Trade Union Act of 1939.¬†

Speaking at the ceremony, the national president of the union, Alhaji Abu Bakarr Fofanah noted that the formation of the unionís branch at the Ports was a laudable development in the life of the union. He thanked the drivers for taking such a bold initiative to come into the mainstream of the union.¬†

Alhaji Abu Bakarr Fofanah also used the opportunity to commend the Ministry of Transport and Aviation and the management of SLPA for such an opportunity after many years of exploitation of drivers at the quay.¬† He said the role played in transporting good and property from the quay to one point and another was significant in the operations of the Sierra Leone Port Authority. ďDrivers also play the role of securing lives and property for which we are in strong partnership with the police, the trade union organization and the Sierra Leone Roads Authority.

In his emphasis Mr. Fornah urged the drivers to perform their duty responsibly because they are partners in development have key functions in governance for which they should always make good example.

Representing the Ministry of Transport and Aviation was Umaru Conteh who noted that government through the ministry dully recognized the union and that government would always give its fullest support to them. He called on members of the union to operate in an efficient and effective manner especially in maintaining their vehicles.  He informed that the amended Traffic Act of 1964 made it clear that all trucks plying with containers must be in good working condition so that their image would be found in the socio-economic development of the country.

The container sectional manager, Mr. Abu Bakarr and other government officials present expressed their delight over the step taken by the union to have a section for drivers in the container department of the Queen Elizabeth Quay.

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