NAIROBI, June 6 (Xinhua) -- Thousands of long-distance truck drivers on Monday blocked major highways in Kenya in protest over insecurity and police harassment.
The chairman of the Kenyan Truck Drivers Group, Hassan Kabeberi Abdallah, said the truck drivers were holding "peaceful demonstrations" from Malaba along the Ugandan border to the coastal city of Mombasa over insecurity and harassment of drivers on the highways.
He indicated that about 3000 trucks were involved in the demonstration and asked motorists to use alternative routes.
"The Kenyan government has provided over time that it does not care about the plight and cries of the Kenyan truckers," he said.
The drivers have been asking the government ensure security along a route from South Sudan to Kenya, claiming they had lost 37 colleagues on the route since January.
Abdallah added the route was a crime hotspot and demanded the Kenyan ambassador to South Sudan be replaced for failing to take action.
The strike by the truck drivers who transit goods from Mombasa port could cause a major shortage of essential commodities in Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Police have warned they will not tolerate any blockades and will arrest those who participate in the unlawful activity.
The drivers'representatives have however said they will not be cowed.