Zambia detains hundreds of Tanzanian lorry drivers


Zambian authorities have seized about 200 Tanzanian trucks carrying logs from the DR Congo, according to the Tanzania Truck Owners Association (Tatoa) statement.

Tatoa chairperson Angelina Ngalula said more than 400 Tanzanian drivers and their lorry boys are also held in Zambia. Ms Ngalula told reporters in Dar es Salaam that the Zambian authorities claim the logs are from Zambia, and not from the DRC

But Tatoa explained that the logs were in transit to the Dar es Salaam Port from the DRC. Ms Ngalula said the drivers had all documents to prove that the logs were from the DRC.

The Tatoa official said more trucks were stranded in the DRC as drivers were afraid to cross the Zambian border.

‘The truck drivers fulfilled all customs procedures and they were allowed to cross the DRC-Zambia border, but they were later arrested in Zambia,” said Ms Ngalula. Most of the trucks were seized at the Nakonde border, Ms Ngalula said.

Tatoa managing director Rahim Dossa said they had already notified the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation about it. But when reached for comment, the ministry’s spokesperson Mindi Kasiga said she wasn’t aware of the Tatoa letter.

She referred this reporter to the Tanzanian High Commissioner to Zambia. Efforts to contact the High Commissioner failed as the call was not answered. However, one official at the ministry, who preferred anonymity, confirmed the ministry had received Tatoa complaints. The source told The Citizen that the government has since written to the Tanzanian embassy in Lusaka.

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