The Sixth-Phase Government has continued to push through mega development projects which are being implemented across the country. After President Samia Suluhu Hassan concluded a successful projects-launching tour in Mwanza Region earlier this week, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa picked up the baton yesterday by inspecting the ongoing Tanzanite Bridge project in Dar es Salaam. The 1,03km-long bridge with 20,5 metres width is being constructed across the Indian Ocean.
The ultra-modern bridge aims at easing traffic jams on Ali Hassan Mwinyi Road, which accommodates many vehicles that flow to and from the City Centre. The implementation of the project will also see the upgrading of roads totaling 5,2 kilometers to connect the two sides of the bridge. Premier Majaliwa expressed his satisfaction with the pace of the one of its kind project, whose implementation has reached 83,5 per cent.
"I have inspected the project, everything is going on well and I am satisfied with the pace. I believe the contractor will complete the job on time," said the PM.
The new bridge is scheduled to be completed in October, this year. The project will cost the East African nation 243,75bn/-. And according to Government sources, so far, the contractor has received 174,5bn/-.
While at the site, the Prime Minister expressed satisfaction on the participation of local experts in big projects undertaken in the country. A good number of Tanzanians are working at the Tanzanite Bridge site. 92 percent of the 970 workers involved in the project are Tanzanians. "Only 8 percent of experts are from abroad, the rest of workers are Tanzanians," noted Tanroads Chief Executive Officer Eng. Patrick Mfugale.
Mr. Majaliwa said the participation of Tanzanians in such big projects help the country to nurture its experts, since they acquire necessary skills from foreign companies. "I'm encouraging all Tanzanians involved in the Tanzanite Bridge construction to make better use of the opportunity they have been offered, this will enable them to participate in the coming projects," he said.
Eng. Mfugale assured the Premier of timely completion of the project. The completion of the project will massively calm traffic. Late last year, the Tanzania National Roads Agency (Tanroads) Project Director, Eng. Christianus Ako said the 2017 statistics showed that 42,000 vehicles were using Ali Hassan Mwinyi road per day.
The project is a result of an agreement signed in July 2018 between the Government of Tanzania and South Korea's GS Engineering and Construction. The signing Ceremony was held in Dar es Salaam and was witnessed by former President, the late John Magufuli and the Prime Minister of South Korea, Lee Nakyon.
The Government is optimistic that the construction of the bridge would appreciably boost government revenue and ease business and other interactions among residents of the port city. The Government has allocated 13tri/-, about 37 percent of the 36.3tri/- national budget for the coming 2021/2022 financial budget towards funding various development projects.
The Government has continued to implement various projects that touch almost every sector such as transport infrastructures in sea, land and air. Also the projects are also implemented in the Energy, Manufacturing, Health and Education sectors. Some of the ongoing projects include the construction of Julius Nyerere Hydropower Project (JNHP), reviving the national airline (ATCL), construction of oil pipeline from Hoima in Uganda to Tanga Region, construction of Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), construction and upgrading of the country's ports.
On different occasions, President Samia Suluhu Hassan has reiterated the Government commitment in ensuring the completion of all identified strategic projects. Earlier this week, President Samia witnessed the signing of multi-billion marine service projects in Mwanza, envisioned to open up business across the Great Lakes Region and Indian Ocean.
The projects include construction of a new cargo ship to ply in the Indian Ocean, a 3,000 tonnes cargo ship to operate in Lake Victoria and cargo ship that will operate in the Lake Tanganyika. The deal also saw the construction of another ship for Lake Tanganyika with the capacity to carry 600 passengers and 400 tonnes of cargo as well as the rehabilitation of MV Umoja that is capable of carrying 1,200 passengers.
The President underscored the need to enhance domestic revenues, as she appealed to Tanzanians to pay tax to keep the country's strategic projects afloat. The President also laid a foundation stone on the proposed construction of the Mwanza-Isaka 341 Km Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) project. She rallied Tanzanians to be patriotic enough and pay tax in running such projects. She was categorical that great deals of the projects were being implemented through internal funding, hence the need of paying tax to the Government.