Transport Minister Dr Harrison Mwakyembe has told the management of Tanzania Airports Authority (TAA) to consider complaints by passengers and staff of airline companies of humiliating practices at airports during inspections.
The minister speaking at the Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam when launching four rescue and fire tenders amounting 5.6bn/-, told TAA workers that they should not ignore concerns raised by the public.
He reminded them that they were supposed to follow rules and regulations when executing their duties.
According to Dr Mwakyembe a number of passengers and airline staffs using both the JNIA and other airports in the country have complained that they are humiliated by security officers’ in-charge during the inspections process.
“While strengthening security at the airports…you should also work on grievances raised by clients so as to improve service delivery as determined in the international civil navigation standards”, he stated.
He however said that apart from the rescue and fire fighting vans, it was important for the authority to improve its services at airports across the country especially in the areas of infrastructure and security.
He said the government will continue to provide needed support to the authority through improving airports to international standards.
TAA Acting Managing Director, Suleiman Suleiman, said some of the rules and regulations set by the International Civil Aviation Organization have led to a drop in ranks of some of the airports in the country.
Eng. Suleiman said once an airport falls in rank, it is not allowed to receive some of the international flights, thus hindering development efforts.
“The Julius Nyerere International Airport is ranked high simply because we have improved the rescue and fire fighting”, he noted.
He said that two out of the four new modern fire tenders have the capacity of carrying 10,000 litres of water each while the remaining two can carry 6500 litres each.
He said one vehicle with the capacity to carry 10,000 litres and that of 6,500 litres will remain at the Julius Nyerere International airport while Mwanza will get one of the 10,000 litre-tenders.
Arusha airport will also be given the 6,500-litre fire tender.
The rescue and fire fighting Commissioner General, Fikiri Salla promised to care for the vehicles, adding that training will be provided from time to time to the forces to ensure efficiency in using and operating the new and modern rescue and fire fighting tenders.
He challenged the public to understand that it is very complicated to use vehicles allocated for airport in combating fire accidents in residential areas since they are designed for fire fighting at airports only.