Tanzania: Opposition Leader Faults Government Authorities Over Ferry Disaster

The passenger ferry, MV Nyerere, which capsized.

Dar es Salaam — The National Chairman of the opposition political party-NCCR Mageuzi, Mr James Mbatia, has faulted government authorities over inconsistencies in connection to a ferry disaster in Lake Victoria yesterday.

He issued the remarks on Friday, September 21, 2018, when he was speaking to journalists at a press conference in Dar es Salaam. The event was broadcast live via local television sites.

According to him, yesterday's ferry disaster was due to the authorities' inconsistencies, noting that the relevant authorities were aware of the faults, but they did not take actions to prevent the disaster from claiming lives.

"The government should have learnt a lesson from what happened during the sinking of the MV Spice Islander and MV Bukoba," he said.

He added: "It is high time the government knew how to prepare itself and prevent deaths to make sure such disasters never take place in the future."

Mr Mbatia who is a Vunjo MP made the remarks just a day after a ferry disaster took place in the lake zone in which, according to the reports, over 94 people have been confirmed dead and 40 have been rescued.

Following the disaster, various top government officials including President John Magufuli sent condolences messages to the families of people who perished in the accident.

Meanwhile, the opposition leader urged the government to establish a legal framework whose objective would be to improve disaster risk management in the country.

He also faulted the authorities for halting the rescuing exercise on Thursday night due to a shortage of rescue equipment.

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