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‘Gov’t has rehabilitated, fitted new engines in ferries Johe, Kanilai’

Mar 4, 2015, 10:08 AM | Article By: Halimatou Ceesay

President Yahya Jammeh on Friday said his government has rehabilitated and fitted new engines in the ferries Johe and Kanilai.

He announced this at the State Opening of the National Assembly for the year 2015 held at the Assembly Building in Banjul.

In his address, President Yahya Jammeh said:“In the quest to address the constraints at the Banjul-Barra crossing point, my Government has rehabilitated and fitted new engines in the ferries Johe and Kanilai and maintenance works are ongoing for ferry Kanilai to start operation. This will ease the difficulties currently encountered by commuters between the south bank and the north bank.”

He said the GPA has invested in infrastructure, equipment, state-of-the-art facility and equipment and IT solutions, coupled with appropriate human resources and expertise.

This, he added, would enable GPA to provide speedy ship turnaround, improved efficiency in cargo handling and operate a flexible tariff system to facilitate reasonable return on investments, while providing optimum customer satisfaction.

With regard to the Banjul Shipyard, he said the government had also partnered with the GPA culminating in the ongoing rehabilitation and upgrading services of the shipyard facilities such as ship repairs, hull and machinery, engineering and carpentry.

This project, he said, has improved the capacity of the GPA to provide maintenance and repairs services to the existing ferries fleet, which in turn will result in the provision of more effective and efficient services.

He said with regard to the seaport of Banjul, his government would continue to seek ways to make it more efficient to handle transit and transshipment cargo bound for third countries such as southern Senegal, Guinea Bissau, Guinea Conakry, and land-locked Mali.

Second phase of Airport Improvement Project in progress

President Jammeh also said the 2nd phase of the Airport Improvement Project has already begun and will entail runway expansion, construction of a fire and rescue station, supply and installation of instrument Landing System and rehabilitation of the New Terminal.

He added that improvement facilities at the Banjul International Airport continue to make it more competitive and to progressively become one of the leading airports in Africa.

To be undertaken this year is the expansion of the checking-in facilities and introduction of flight information display systems (FIDS), he said.

These measures “will significantly improve” the simultaneous checking-in capacity for airlines and passengers and “lessen” the pressure on terminal facilities during peak periods, the President said.

Funds for Laminkoto-Passimass Road Project

President Jammeh further stated that the Laminkoto-Passimass Road “remains the outstanding section of the National Road Network that is yet to be constructed”; but according to him, efforts are being intensified by the Ministry of Finance to put together the necessary funds to implement the project as a matter of urgency.

He said the ministry of Works through the National Roads Authority “is currently in the process of recruiting a consultant” for the project.

He said that with the construction of the Laminkoto Passimass Road, the whole country on either side of the River Gambia will be connected by a first-class road network.

“I am happy to inform this house that the laying of the foundation for the Trans-Gambia Bridge has been accomplished as part of the 50th Independence Anniversary Celebration,” he said.