Deputy Minister for Transport urge TEMESA to use electronic systems on ferries

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Posted On: April 16, 2019

WORKS, Transport and Communications Deputy Minister Elias Kwandikwa has directed the Tanzania Electrical, Mechanical and Electronics Services Agency (TEMESA) to introduce a system for keeping daily records of the number of passengers and cargo on each ferry countrywide. The deputy minister said the practice would help make early intervention in controlling overloading, which has been one of the major causes of ferry accidents in the country.

MV Nyerere accident in Lake Victoria is the latest incident in the country, which occurred in September last year, killing over 200 people. But the ferry was reported to have the capacity of carrying only 100 passengers. It was plying between Bugorola (Ukerewe) and Ukara Island in Mwanza Region. Mr Kwandikwa gave the directive, when he was speaking to members of Temesa workers’ council during their meeting in Dar es Salaam last week.

Before starting the meeting, the members observed one-minute silence to remember those killed in the MV Nyerere ferry accident. “You should ensure that ferries are safe to avoid disasters. Each ferry has to have a system to know the number of passengers every day,” he stressed.

On the other hand, he challenged TEMESA to ensure they improved the capacity to effectively collect and manage funds by installing modern technologies of collecting fares. “You should ensure that you use your own sources to improve fare collection means of technologies,” he told the members. During the meeting, the members were expected to discuss the performance of TEMESA for the 2018/19 financial year and endorse the proposed budget for the next year.

Chairman of the council, the Chief Executive Eng. Japhet Y. Maselle said various government institutions owed TEMESA over 15bn/- accumulated from bills for repairing their vehicles. “This is a huge amount of money that if we manage to collect it will help repair some of the ferries and install modern facilities for collecting fares,” Eng. Maselle noted.

He told the deputy minister that TEMESA was also lacked manpower. Highlighting some of the achievements, he said TEMESA had managed to set up a new workshop for Kilombero District in Morogoro Region, aiming at bringing services closer to people. He assured that the agency would continue allocating funds from its budget for modernizing infrastructure of the workshops.