Transport minister Dr Harrison Mwakyembe yesterday made an inspection tout of the Dar Station-Ubungo Maziwa railway stretch after which he promised to start passenger operations in October this year.
Speaking after the visit, Dr Mwakyembe expressed satisfaction with the pace of repairing the rail saying works to start the services were at good stages.
He said that efforts made by TRL staff were a clear indication that the project will be accomplished in October this year according to the rail engineers.
“I am satisfied with the ongoing efforts made by TRL management and Reli Assets Holding Company (Rahco), they have assured me that the project will be ready in October this year,” he said.
Elaborating, he said that services will begin with 14 passengers’ coaches, adding that so far one of the coaches is ready while the other 13 are in final repairs. He said all the work is done by local experts.
He however said the main challenge facing the project for now are areas to build train station at Ubungo Maziwa as well as areas for passengers to pack their vehicles before boarding the train,”
He called upon internal investors to grab the opportunity and build car packing areas and assured them that they would get high profit from passengers using the commuter train services.
Dr Mwakyembe also asked Dar es Salaam residents who have built houses within 15 meters along the railway stretch to demolish them for themselves before he does so when time comes.
For their part, TRL Acting Managing Director, Eng Kipallo Kisanfu and RAHCO Managing Director, Eng Bernhard Tito told the minister that they will make sure that the project is accomplished on time despite the fact that they received the project funds on June 23, this year.
“Our experts are now on work as you have seen and everything is under control. We have got all the funds needed for the project so things will be alright,’’ Tito said.