Speaking to the reporters in Dar es Salaam yesterday , the TRL acting director general, Ng’hwani Rashid said that the price hike was approved by the Surface and Marine Transport Regulatory Authority (SUMATRA) .
Pugu train route is 20 kms from Dar es Salaam Railway Station. It will have seven stops at Gongo la Mboto, FFU Mombasa, Banana, Karakata(airport), Vingunguti Mbuzi, SS Bakhresa, Kamata (Kariakoo City BRT station) finally at City centre.
He said initially the train operated at a trial price of 400/- per person waiting for the approval from SUMATRA .
Rashid explained that the SUMATRA approval was according to stakeholders meeting which was held recently in Dar es Salaam to propose the fares for the train route.
According to the acting director general, the City center-Pugu train route was officially launched on August 8, this year by the Minister for Works, Transport and Communications Professor Makame Mbarawa.
In his speech, the minister directed the TRL management to peg the price at 400/- while waiting for SUMATRA’s approval of the prices train passengers.
“I would like to inform our passengers that the price of our City Center-Pugu train route will be 600/- which has been approved by SUMATRA , “ he said.
“However, the price for Ubungo Maziwa/City center route popularly known as Mwakyembe train will remain 400/- per person,”he said.
Rashid reiterated that the number of routes per day will remain as usual calling for passengers to support new change of fare which has been made .
In August, this year the TRL introduced train route from the City Centre to Pugu station.
According to TRL, the move was part of their commitment to improve city transport which would reduce the traffic jam in Dar e s Salaam.
Speaking in Dar es Salaam, TRL public relations manager Midlaid Maez said the train service would be cheap and relatively reliable compared to other means of transport, including commuter buses famously known as ‘daladala’. He said most of the residents from Pugu were spending a lot of money boarding up to three buses to the city centre.
Maez revealed that the fare was approved by the Surface and Marine Transport Regulatory Authority (SUMATRA).
“We started trials on Tuesday with only 10 wagons...each cabin had a capacity to carry 80 people on seats and more than 20 people standing,” Maez said.
He added the train will have 10 stops including Pugu station, Mwisho wa Lami, Gongo la Mboto, FFU Mombasa, Banana (Njia Panda Segerea), Karakana, Vingunguti Mbuzi, Bakhresa, Kamata and Stesheni at the city centre.
Maez said demand for the train service was very high due to the challenge of transport for Dar es Salaam residents . He added that almost everywhere in the city people were demanding for more train services.
The first commuter train service in Dar es Salaam was launched in 2012 by then Transport Minister, Dr Harrison Mwakyembe, to ease congestion on the city roads.
It was the first phase of a government scheme to improve the transport network in Dar es Salaam. One train covers a 25 kms journey between Dar es Salaam's Mwakanga and Tazara railway stations and the second one runs for 20kms between Ubungo-Maziwa and the city railway station .