The Russian Federation has delivered a contribution of 53 KAMAZ trucks and 10 trailers to the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) in Uganda.
The trucks which were handed over on Wednesday will be stationed at the WFP’s Regional logistics Hub in Kampala. They will assist in the distributions and deliveries and distributions of commodities throughout the East and Central African region.
The vehicles are part of a Russian global contribution to WFP and is estimated at USD 10.6m bringing the total value of Russia’s KAMAZ-based contribution since 2006 to USD 33.8 million.
The truck types have a transportation capacity of 10-14 metric tons each and have previously been deployed in difficult operational environments with in Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia and South Sudan, where needs exceed the capacities of local transporters.
WFP deploys its own fleet of trucks to complete the last mile of the deliveries. These trucks are therefore crucial to transport food to areas that are remote, insecure or lacking in infrastructure, where commercial transport capacity is lacking. Since their deployment into the WFP’s Global Fleet, the trucks which have proved reliable have transported more than 350,000 metric tons over the most demanding and complicated routes, covering 6.5 million kilometres.
This is the third major global contribution of KAMZ trucks, following the donation of 40 trucks to WFP Afghanistan in 2012, and a historic contribution of 218 trucks to the global fleet in 2014-2015. This contribution represents a significant moment for the well-established yet growing partnership between Russia and WFP in the area of logistical technologies.
Apart from WFP’s Regional Fleet Hub in Uganda, three other WFP Global regional hubs in Ghana and United Arab Emirates received the contribution to strengthen WFP’s transport capacity. Additionally, KAMAZ will provide a three-year training programme for WFP’s fleet and workshop managers, mechanics and drivers.
The Russian Ambassador to Uganda, Alexander Polyakov, said that under the second stage of the project, Russia provided WFP with additional ninety seven Kamaz trucks, four mobile training facilities, thirty trailers, fuel tankers and spare parts, most of which are for the Ugandan hub.
“I am confident they (donated items) will prove to be beneficial to the region, meet all needs of the Global Truck Fleet, help a lot of people to survive in the coming years and address the plight of even more those in need. Let these vehicles be in use a long time, service personnel be healthy and drive safely,” the Ambassador said.
The Minister for Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Hillary Onek said the handover marks a important milestone in the history of the long standing partnership between Russia and World Food Program.
He said the donation will help boost the operational performance of Uganda and support WFP’s emergency humanitarian assistance across the region.
“The trucks will stationed at the WFP strategic fleet base in Uganda and will augment WFP’s logistics capacity not only for its operations within but also in South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo and Ethiopia,” the Minister said.
He said that with the donation, WFP will be able to respond quickly and more efficiently to the humanitarian needs and emergencies to save the lives and meet the needs of the people affected, strengthen regional truck fleets based in Uganda and be able to rapidly deploy trucks to fill the gaps in local transport capacity reaching those in need with food assistance as quickly as possible.