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Tragic Accident in Kaffrine: Bus Owners Facing the Judge on Wednesday, The State Backpedals on Luggage Racks Ban

Birame Tine and Moussa Sow, the owners of the two buses that collided in Sikilo, were placed yesterday under arrest warrant by the public prosecutor at the Kaolack High Court. Locked down for endangering the lives of others, failure to take out an insurance policy, among other things, they will be tried on January 18 in a flagrante delicto hearing at the Kaolack High Court.

After the drama and emotion it caused, it will be necessary to clear the legal aspect of the Sikilo accident, which occurred on the night of Saturday to Sunday. Birame Tine and Moussa Sow, who were brought to the Kaolack High Court yesterday, spent their first night in prison after 72 hours in police custody at the Kaffrine Gendarmerie Brigade.

After their hearing yesterday by the public prosecutor at the Tgi of Kaolack, the two owners of the buses involved in this dramatic collision were placed under arrest warrant for endangering the lives of others, failure to subscribe to an insurance policy for one and for various other contraventions of the provisions of the Highway Code relating to acceptance, approval, registration and tyres.And the ministry chose the path of flagrante delicto. Birame Tine and MoussaSow will be judged on Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at the Tgi in Kaolack.

It should be noted that the Sikilo accident, which left 41 dead and 99 injured, caused turmoil and consternation throughout the national territory.

Due to its seriousness, the State took 22 measures during an Inter-ministerial Council convened last Monday to ensure road safety. On Thursday, the Ministries of Interior and Transport signed the first joint decree which now prohibits intercity transport between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. During the hours when circulation of interurban public passenger transport vehicles is prohibited, stopping and parking on interurban axes is prohibited. The vehicles concerned are only authorised to park in bus stations or car parks reserved for this purpose.

In Addition, Bus Stations Will Be Regulated

As the opening and closing hours of public and private intercity bus stations for public passenger transport are fixed at 5 a.m. and 11 p.m. Then, the operator of the bus station opens and closes access to the site by appropriate means. In principle, 6 other measures such as the limitation of the operating life to 10 years for passenger transport vehicles and to 15 years for goods transport vehicles, of any transformation of vehicles intended for the transport of goods into transport of passengers, the fitting and use of luggage racks, and proscribing the dismantling of those already attached to vehicles, among other things, should be taken by the authorities.

Luggage Rack: Government Backpedals

But there was a dramatic turn of events last night. Because the State has reversed a fundamental decision: the ban on luggage racks. Faced with transport resistance, the government has decided to offer a one-year derogation period to truck drivers whose vehicles do not have a hold. Even if it promises to accelerate the process of fleet renewal.

By Justin GOMIS / justin@lequotidien.sn

  • Translation by Ndey T. SOSSEH

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