Another thrilling story is the one about a shipment of HIV treatments to Central African Republic (CAR). CAR is a landlocked country of around 4.7 million inhabitants, where the political situation is very unstable since December 2020. A civil war has been going on since 2012. Clashes between government forces and armed groups have forced thousands of refugees to cross into the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Chad, UNHCR reports.
Due to the unstable political situation, borders often are closed, causing thousands of trucks to get stuck for months. Mid December 2020, i+solutions’ shipment of HIV treatments to Bangui in CAR also got stuck at the border of Cameroon. Over two thousand trucks were waiting to pass into CAR for over a month. There was a lot of uncertainty about the date when borders would reopen and whether electricity for keeping shipments at the right temperature would continue to be available. Some truck drivers decided to pass the border anyway and were attacked by rebels.
i+solutions was able to establish direct contact with the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA), that are present as a UN peacekeeping mission in CAR since April 2014, with currently more than 10,000 troops on the ground.
MINUSCA sends convoys of trucks into CAR once a week, bringing aid and relief products, food supplies and medicines to the capital. i+solutions was able to secure a place on one of those convoys going to Bangui in January. Our LSP Bolloré Logistics coordinated the transport together with MINUSCA and their local transporters, after receiving our instructions to proceed. This allowed us to finally deliver the shipment safely to its destination. Since then, thanks to the close collaboration with MINUSCA, we have been able to obtain this military protection for four of our trucks, bringing HIV and antimalarial treatments and PPE for account of the French Red Cross and Worldvision International. And another shipment for the Ministry of Health is underway.
We want to thank our LSP Bolloré Logistics and MINUSCA for their excellent work, support and protection in making this happen.