Freight traffic has resumed along the road which connects Cameroon to the Central African Republic. Last week, Cameroonian truck drivers stopped work after several of them, affected by Covid-19, were detected and taken care of at the entrance of Bangui by the Central African authorities. Which had created a panic. The truckers demanded in particular to be tested at the border, and that their colleagues cared for in Bangui be repatriated. They were partially successful.
It is a relief for the authorities of the two countries as the Douala-Bangui corridor is strategic for supplying in particular the Central African capital. There are still some refractories, but they are few.
Since a screening system at the Beloko border post has been put in place, the majority of the 150 trucks immobilized at this border have taken to the road, according to Oumarou Sahado, president of the main Cameroonian truck drivers union. ” The majority have agreed to be tested, so there is a minority who are still waiting. The authorities warned us well: ‘’ if you want to work, you must respect the regulations of other countries ’’ “, He explains.
90% of new coronavirus cases come from Cameroon
Test samples taken at the border are flown to Bangui. It takes 48 hours for the results. UNHCR has provided space to isolate suspected cases. In the long term, the Central African Minister of Health, Pierre Somse, plans to build a center which should make it possible to treat certain patients on the spot. In the meantime, the drivers who test positive continue to be transferred to Bangui and not returned to their homes as requested. But their union representative said he was “now reassured” about the conditions of their care in the capital.
Bangui is particularly attentive to this device. Three quarters of the new confirmed cases in the country are imported cases, and among them, according to the minister, 90% come from Cameroon.