Drivers awarded for their skills in East African region competition

Drivers awarded for their skills in East African region competition

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Paul Jansen Executive Director Fleet Forum giving an interview during the Driver Recognition Program 2016. PHOTO: ALBERT MWANGEKA.

Nairobi, KENYA: Top drivers who work for humanitarian organizations in East Africa were feted over the weekend for exuding great skills in their area of work in the 1st Driver Recognition Programme DRP in the region.

The DRP 2016 which took place in Machakos County in Kenya over the weekend, attracted a pool of 14 drivers from the region in an effort to test their driving abilities and also to motivate them.

“Drivers have an extremely important role in humanitarian work. They take care of transportation of supplies in emergency areas in order to reach beneficiaries. They also ensure safety of staff members.They can make or break the success of an organization,” said Executive Director Paul Jansen, Fleet Forum whose company organized the competition.

The event co-hosted by World Vision and World Food Programme WFP, saw Simon Njaramba from WFP emerge as the winner.

An elated Njaramba who won a prize of $500 dedicated his prize to his family members.

“I was not sure if I would win but I did my best. Driving has its challenges but I still advice all drivers to be dedicated to their duty,” he continued.

The 1st runners up and 2nd runners up were Benson Nyundo from World Vision and Adero Dickson from UNDP Somalia.

“One of the essentials of this competition was that the driver took into consideration safety of his passengers. We were also interested on how the driver would engage his gears when encountering a rough terrain and steep slopes,” said Ngoni Mariga, an assessor during the competition from Globaltrack.

Uzel Tole from World Vision Kenya explained that even if he did not win, he would make an effort to apply what he had learnt and emerge winner during next year’s competition.

“The main aim of this event was not only to test their driving skills but also to bring out the importance of a driver’s work and train them on how to overcome the numerous obstacles that they would face while working,” explained Jansen. .

Different drivers from the participating countries of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Somalia and Ethiopia all agreed that they faced difficulties while dispensing their duties.

“During the El Nino rains it was difficult to deliver supplies in some affected regions,” said Ellypenda Niboye, WFP Tanzania.

Wolde Nidaw from Goal Ethiopia complained of rough terrain and insecurity challenges in his country.