Public and private sector must find quick solution to blockading of key cargo routes: BUSA

Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) says the public and private sectors need to act swiftly on finding a solution to the blockading of key cargo routes.

Motorists experienced a major traffic backlog on the N3, near Van Reenen’s Pass this week, due to truck drivers’ protesting over the employment of foreign nationals in the sector.

Both lanes have now been reopened.

The N12 road between Bloemhof and Wolmaranstad in North West was also re-opened overnight after it was blockaded by truck drivers on Tuesday.

Truck drivers say they have suspended the strike to give their leadership an opportunity to engage with government departments. They say they hope their complaints will be resolved.

BUSA’s CEO Cas Coovadia says the impact of regular protests may result in scaring off investors and contributes to the decline of the economy.

“Government, business and labour meet often and we talk often and we engage at NEDLAC. But we just don’t seem to be able to deal with the hard issues that we need to deal with. The bottom line is that we are not attracting investment, our economy is not growing, we are not creating jobs. We have to ask ourselves what does government need to do, what does business need to do and what does labour need to do? We need to bring together employer representatives in the trucking industry on how we can deal with it. We are just not treating it as urgently enough and as a crisis it does need to be treated.”

Entire supply chain under attack

The Road Freight Association (RFA) also says government and private sector need to work together towards finding a solution on the blockading of key cargo routes.

The RFA’s CEO Gavin Kelly says despite legitimate concerns being raised by striking drivers, the entire supply chain is coming under attack.

“This is a duel process to go to those companies that are not being compliant. If these guys have identified to the Department of Labour, that there are problems in terms of employing illegal, undocumented, call them what you want, foreigners, in preference to citizens, why have you not taken that information to the department and put pressure on the department to deal with those employers who don’ want to abide by the law? Yes, then it is to protest where the employers are and continue putting pressure on authorities.”

Share article

Source: SABC News (