Malawian truck drivers have called on the government to back their request for K 140,000 as the UK runs out of truck drivers. Both countries are grappling with a fuel crisis. In Malawi, the crisis was sparked by a sit-in by tanker drivers.
Truck drivers have complained that despite the government setting a minimum wage of K 140,000, employees do not adhere to the directive because drivers are still paid K 40,000.
Drivers are also concerned about having to present negative Covid-19 test certificates every time they travel, but they pay $ 50 (K 40,000) to get tested.
Truck owners of the Malawi Transporters Association and Malawi Fuel Transporters Association also joined the strike yesterday to call on the government to stop giving the majority of contracts to foreign companies.
On Wednesday, some of the striking drivers were arrested by police.
The strike resulted in a fuel shortage at gas stations across the country. The Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA) said yesterday there was fuel on reserve and efforts were being made to address fuel shortages.
Following concerns over fuel shortages, the government last night reminded truck owners to comply with the K 140,000 minimum wage for truck drivers.
The government has also issued a law reducing 48-page passport fees for cross-border truck drivers from K 120,000 to K 60,000, while the health ministry has ordered all truck drivers crossing borders to test for free. Covid-19.
In the UK there is also a shortage of 100,000 truck drivers. This left many gas stations without fuel, leading to panic shopping and long queues.
To solve this problem, transport companies have increased the wages of truck drivers by more than 25% and the government is offering 5,000 three-month work visas to foreign truckers.