Mombasa, KENYA: Logistics companies and drivers in Mombasa have welcomed the move by South Sudan of joining the East African community.
Most of the companies whose businesses have been down over the past few months as a result of the renewed clashes between rival factions in South Sudan, said the move would reduce custom charges for goods to South Sudan.
Speaking in Mombasa on Wednesday, Patrick Nduati; a clearing agent, welcomed the move saying this will make their work more easier and convenient.
“It will now be easier to transport cargo to South Sudan as custom duties for cargo headed to South Sudan could now be paid in Mombasa.This will help shorten time taken to clear cargo at the Uganda-South Sudan border.” Said Nduati.
Mohamed Farah, a retired truck driver who used to ferry cargo from Mombasa to Juba ,hopes the integration would improve treatment of Kenyan truck drivers in South Sudan as well as provide more employment opportunities.
“Truck drivers are treated like foreigners in South Sudan and we hope the integration of South Sudan into the East African Community will help improve the treatment of Kenyan truck drivers in the country.” Said Farah.
South Sudan which became a sovereign state in 2011 after voting to secede from Sudan, had its application to join the East African community approved in April 2016.
On Monday this week, S.Sudan officially gained access to privileges and rights of being a member of the East African community after depositing the instrument of ratification on the Accession to the Treaty for the Establishment of the East African Community.
The ceremony took place at the EAC headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania.
Secretary general Liberat Mfumukeko received the document that saw South Sudan join the regional block that consists of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda and Burundi