The Star (Nairobi)

3 December 2012

Kenya: New Ferry Service Launched in Lake Victoria

Transport services in Lake Victoria received a major boost following the weekend launch of a new ferry service and route to reach locked islands.

Mbita Ferry Services, that manages ferry transport in Lake Victoria, added a new ferry nicknamed MV Nansio that will connect Mbita to Mfangano and Takawiri Islands that have been depending on wooden boat ride in the lake.

The 280-deck tonnage ferry has a capacity of over 300 passengers and can accommodate seven saloon cars. Mbita Ferry Services manager Dedan Wakiaga said the launch was necessitated by the need and demands from the residents of the two islands who have been struggling to access the island, sometimes risking lives in the storm.

He said the new ferry route will reduce cost and time of doing business for islands' residents. Residents who have been spending over three hours on the lake using wooden engine boats will now use one hour to get to their destination.

Wakiaga said they are planning to open more routes so as to promote marine transport. The launch of MV Nansio brings to seven the number of ferries operated by the company in Lake Victoria, with three tourist ferries patrolling Kisumu to Rusinga Island.

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