Cargo and commuter bus owners have told drivers refusing terms provided by their employers to return the vehicles instead of pushing for a strike.

Speaking at a press conference in Dar es Salaam yesterday, the owners said that there is no cause for drivers to strike because their claims were being solved.

“Drivers were demanding a work contract between them and their employers which has largely been solved, while other demands are being solved as agreed,” remarked Sabri Mabrouk, the owners’ group spokesman.

He said the government had provided until September 30 for every driver to be provided with a work contract. it’s the hope that the drivers and their association will keep their calm so we do not end up with a strike like in May where people got stranded without notice, especially now where that there have been set a deadline of September 30, so that we can all respect the law and the rulings of the courts and others, so that we do not end up with anarcy..

“I am surprised that the drivers come out and announce the strike while the deadline is far from having been reached,” he said.

The owners advised drivers who are willing to work to stay with their employers and review their contracts should do so, instead of announcing a strike which is of no benefit to them, he stated.

He urged Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda to “use his wisdom to form a team to find solutions for challenges facing drivers.”

He said the team is expected to come out with a solution, and  before being implemented the drivers announce a strike, which was not fair.

Ali Dewji, board member of the Tanzania Truck Owners Association (TATOA) urged those planning a strike to wait for the September 30 deadline to see how far employers would have failed to implement all of their demands.

Angelina Ngilua, the chairperson of TATOA, said that the drivers were going out of their basic claims on the issue, which shows that they have a hidden agenda and not the contract issue.

Drivers who are willing to continue working need to sit down and negotiate the terms in their contract instead of wasting their time announcing strike action, she emphasized.