Roadblocks costly for trucks


ROAD Transport Association president Jacob Luke says roadblocks at Chimbu and Jiwaka have cost trucking companies millions of kina in the past 10 days.
Two sections of the Highlands Highway at Chimbu and Jiwaka were blocked by the aggrieved relatives of two policemen killed during the election in Enga.
“Responsible authorities turned a blind eye on the problem and that is why the people’s grievances escalated and resulted in the roadblocks,” Luke said.
“The people have waited while concerned authorities were unable to attend to the matter, but when politicians wanted the people to vote for them, they were on
their knees begging for votes,” Luke said.
“Yet when the people were suffering, the leaders were not there.”
He urged the authorities, including local MPs, to find an amicable solution to the issue instead of delaying the process which resulted the roadblock.
Luke said the trucking industry was being held at ransom.
“Trucking companies pay our fair share of insurance rates, vehicle registration and tax to the government that allows us to ‘spin our wheels’ as genuine road users for economic viability,” he said.
“Such election-related situations should be solved responsibly at the political level.”
Luke blamed the highway closure on negligence by the government and key agencies, including local the MPs.
He said the authorities should bring the people together to find a solution.
Luke said the situation stemmed from an election-related problem.
He said users were feeling the pinch of it.
Luke said the highway must be left alone and open to users while such issues were resolved using available avenues.

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