DEPUTY Minister for Works, Transport and Communications Elias Kwandikwa has assured Tanzanians that the government will ensure all border roads are upgraded to tarmac level to facilitate public transport and the transportation of goods.
He noted that transport blues that people were facing in the Lake Zone of Mwanza, Kagera, Geita, Kigoma, Mara, Shinyanga and Simiyu would soon be history.
Mr Kwandikwa said this during his one-day tour of Kagera Region on Tuesday where he inspected several projects implemented by his ministry, including a 60.7km Kyetema-Kyaka Road which would be upgraded to tarmac level.
He noted that during the past five years (2015-2020) the fifth phase government under President John Magufuli had constructed a 2,624,7km-road network which was about 600km per year, while a 4,856km-road network was under a feasibility study.
He thus appealed to Tanzanians to support government efforts by paying tax, working hard and doubling the production of cash and food crops.
"Efforts by the fifth phase government under President Magufuli to fight corruption and spearhead accountability will attract more investors. Under the leadership of Dr Magufuli, the government has set out to diversify the economy and address infrastructural development issues hindering productive activities. Reliable roads are vital for people's development," he said.
He noted that Isaka-Ushirombo-Lusahunga Road was being rehabilitated while 93km Luhasunga-Rusumo Road would soon be rehabilitated.
The Isaka-Rusumo Road is important as it links Tanzania to neighbouring countries: Rwanda, Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
The rehabilitation of Karagwe-Kasulo Road was in the pipeline and a budget had already been set aside for the purpose.
He noted that Mv Victoria had been overhauled with modern engines and would soon start operating while a 3.5km Busisi Ferry Road was under construction.
"This is a golden opportunity for people in the Lake Zone to make business and increase their incomes," he said.
Bukoba Rural MP Jasson Rweikiza informed the deputy minister that the 60.7km Kyetema-Kyaka Road was crucial because it linked 18 out of 29 wards and thanked the government for the timely decision to upgrade the road to tarmac level.
"The project is vital for creating employment opportunities, mostly rural-based, thereby helping to reduce rural-urban migration. We are grateful to President Magufuli for his efforts to transform the nation into an industrial economy," he said.
Mr Kwandikwa also visited Kyanyabasa Ferry and pledged to install a bigger ferry with the capacity to transport 12 vehicles and later visited Katokoro Road that had been damaged by floods.
He witnessed people crossing the area using small canoes and charged 1,000/- each. The road links four wards namely Katoro, Ruhunga, Mugajwale and Kyamulaile.