Monday, April 4, 2011

Senegambia border relations remain fragile

Senegal Transport Union on Strike

The Voice Newspaper has been informed on April 1, 2011 that the Senegal Transport Union is on a two-week border strike in reaction to an incident involving one of its trucks at the Boarder Town of Farafenni, the North Bank Region of The Gambia.
A resident of the country-side town of Farafenni and a teacher at Soma told this paper that the strike began after a Senegalese truck loaded full of cement sink while attempting to board a Ferry in February 2011.

“When the Senegalese Transport Union requested for compensation, the Gambian Authorities said they can only offer compensation for the cement but not for the truck,” our source said, resulting in a strike by the Union, which chooses not to use services of Gambia’s ferry crossing points for two weeks.
No one was killed in the accident and the strike affected only the Senegalese movement of good in and out of The Gambia. Our reporter gathered that the impasse ended on April 3, 2011. In fact, our source said the vehicles started crossing into The Gambia earlier on Friday 1st April, 2011, prior to the deadline.
“The strike does not mean the border was closed, apart from vehicles and goods, people were moving in and out of Gambia’s boarders with Senegal. However, the authorities in Senegal did not allow cars loaded with goods from The Gambia to enter into Senegal during this period,” she said.
Though the event seems to be a minor incident, which is not the case, it is likely to have an adverse effect on the fragile boarder relations between the two countries that has been resurfacing intermittently for decades. Source - The Voice

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