Senegal Transport Workers End Strike

Commuters try to board a busy bus on December 3, 2021, in Mbao. Senegal’s transport unions went on open-ended strike Friday over alleged police harassment and illicit competition, paralysing the capital Dakar and other regions SEYLLOU / AFP


Senegalese transport unions ended a strike overnight from Friday to Saturday that had paralysed capital Dakar and other regions over police harassment and illicit competition.

Although there remained “some stumbling blocks” in talks with the government, transport workers would give politicians a month to sort through all the problems, said Gora Khouma of the CUSTRS union.

He added that the police and gendarmes had been ordered to find ways of reducing harassment.

Much of Senegal was stuck fast between Wednesday and Friday, with passenger and goods transport vehicles almost absent from the country’s roads.

In many places, people turned to motorbikes or even horse-drawn vehicles, as striking drivers blocked state-owned buses from operating outside the capital.

Large numbers of people were unable to get to work and many pupils missed school, including in Dakar.

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CUSTRS went on strike to force the government to address a list of 11 grievances, with police harassment top of the list, as well as illegal competition and excessive numbers of road checkpoints.