Benin: Trucks banned from plying some avenues in Cotonou21 May 2007
Cotonou: From now on, Pahou and Dekoungbe lorry parks on the road to Ouidah, will host heavy trucks waiting to load at Cotonou Harbour. Driving or parking heavy trucks are now banned on Marina Boulevard, Avenue John Paul II, the road going from the old Radio House, the crossroads of the Three Banks, the Harbour Port of Cotonou. “Trucks enter one by one in the harbour, that’s why we park here. But it‘s forbidden,” Charles Dossa, a Beninois truck driver said. “If you stay for even 30 minutes, police will collect your papers and tow your truck away for two to three days. And you pay 10,000 CFA francs, about 2,800 Naira or 199,000 Ghanian Cedis,” he added.
The ban declaration was made last week by Beninois authorities, during a workshop with transporters, in order to end the anarchy and the chaos created by truck drivers behind the presidential palace. Last week, a heavy truck nearly ran over the Minister of Transport, Mr. Richard Senou. Mr Edgar Alia, the minister of Interior didn’t hide his shame and anger. « I’m ashamed when I’m called to regulate the traffic because the heavy duty trucks have blocked all the traffic. A driver that refuses to park when ordered to, and who drove straight to the Minister of Transport,” Mr Alia declared. “That means that we’ve collaborated negatively with the transporters and nowadays, no one wants to respect the law,” he justified.