Tanzania: Zanzibar to Introduce Surveillance Radar, MV Tracking Systems in Indian Ocean

DAR ES SALAAM: Zanzibar is planning to introduce surveillance Radar and marine vessel tracking system to promote safer fishing and transportation activities in the Indian Ocean.

This was unveiled by Zanzibar's Minister for Infrastructure, Communication and Transport, Dr Khalid Salum Mohamed. He made this revelation in Dar es Salaam on Thursday while officiating opening of the of a two day Regional Seminar on Africa Ferry Safety which was convened at Julius Nyerere International Convectional Center.

"Currently there are around 380 illegal harbors used for boarding and disembarking of passengers and cargo. This contravenes safety measures. The government is in the process of dealing with this by introducing surveillance radar and marine vessels tracking system," the minister observed

He said that being an Island within the Indian Ocean, Zanzibar residents and visitors do mostly depend on Ferries for movement of people and goods and this exposes them to fatal accidents and therefore the government is in traducing these measures to protect live and economy of the archipelago.

According to him there are some deadly ferries mishaps occurred in the past but the government was taking serious measures to ensure such accidents don't repeat themselves for safer water bodies transportation.

The minister highlighted other measure of combating ferry accidents to be including ensuring there ins firm maritime administration, strict measure of registering and identify marine vessels which are to be operated by skilled crew members.

He called for water way travellers in the country to shun away form board ferries and other water transportation through porous harbors where there are no skilled and registered crew members and hence, endangering lives.

Dr Mohamed also called for Tanzania and other African Ferry transportation stakeholders to have commitment of adhering to the international safety standards set by the International Marine Organization (IMO).

Most of the ferry accidents, according to the minister ware due to poor design of the equipment, unsafe practices among crew members and maritime administrators and poor weather, which ar easily to combat if measure are taken keenly.

The two day Regional Seminar on Africa Ferry Safety was attended by delegates from Kenya, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Tanzania.

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