African Press International (API)

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Posted by African Press International on October 31, 2007

jaduong-leo.jpg<By our correspondent Leo Odera Omolo


31/10/07API/APN – Kisumu: The Mombasa based Kenya Ferry Services (KFS) has installed closed circuit television cameras in all five ferries as it seeks to improve security in its facilities.

The installation came hot on the heels of a damning report by the US government about the threat of terrorist attacks at the Kenyan port City situated along the Indian Ocean shoreline.

Ferries Mv. Mvita, Mv. Pwani, Mv Kilindini and Mv Harambee-which were all commissioned in 1990 operate at the Likoni channel-linking the mainland and Mombasa Island.

Cameras have also been installed at the ferry approaches to help the management in controlling traffic.

Mr. Joel Ria the KFS Managing Director said the internet connected cameras were installed at a cost of Ksh. 2 million (USD 29, 850) by US firm Texas Alarms.

The security measure was taken after concerns were raised about safety on the ferries. Currently, the ferries carry 160,000 passengers and more than 3,000 vehicles daily. Statistics from KFS show that the five ferries cater for 54 million passengers and 1.1 million vehicles annually.

This rose from 41.2 million passengers and 890,000 vehicles in 2001. KFS expects 74.5 million passengers and 1.38 million vehicles will use the ferries by 2010.

KFS is making arrangements to improve use of the ferries by constructing special levies for pass holders.

Pass holders currently have to queue with those that want to buy tickets. A tender for the project is being worked on. We have already received the funding in the current budget and hope to complete the job soon, he said.

Another ferry Nyayo is currently undergoing mandatory annual repair and renovations.

Mr. Ria said this means the ferry will be out of service for about six weeks. Two other old ferries Mv. Mvita and Mv Pwani have already been renovated at a total cost of Ksh. 40 million (USD 597,000)

The MD said ferries, which were commissioned in 1969 and 1975 respectively, were rehabilitated to sustain services at both the Likoni and Mtongwe channels.


Published by API/APN tel +4793299739 or +4763002525

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