By Azania Post Reporter
SPECIAL Seats legislator , Zainab Mndolwa (CUF) has appealed to the Tanzanian government to suspend toll imposed on the Mwalimu Nyerere bridge that links Dar es Salaam city with Kigamboni creek.
Speaking during a question and answer session in Parliament today in Dodoma region , she said there should be no fee against the bridge.
“I just want to ask when will the fee on the bridge be suspended like that of Ruvu or Wami where people and their vehicles pass free?, she asked
Responding, the Minister in the Prime Minister's Office (Policy, Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Employment, Youth and disabled, Jenista Mhagama said the Nyerere bridge was constructed under a loan issued by the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) and the government.
She said the fee was imposed according to the rules and regulations of the Tanzanian government .
“The fee will be there to stay but when a need arise to do so it would be done according to the stipulated laws”, she said.
However this is not first time for people asking the government to revisit the charges imposed on the bridge.
Few days after the government announced charges some people raised complaints and appealed for a quick review.
"The charges should be reviewed as I expected it to be different from those of Kigamboni Ferry; the bridge is what we have been waiting for," said Shaibu Athuman
He added that if the toll are similar to those use to pay at ferry then the government would not be helpful at all to middle income earners.
Another resident of Kigamboni, Amos Nangashe, was quoted as saying charges for saloon cars should be reduced and compensate them by increasing charges to business vehicles. "We are happy with the government effort of constructing the bridge but reviewing the charges is very crucial for them to suit us all," he said.
He further argued that Kigamboni Ferry costs are on the high side simply because the ferry operations needs fuel to run it and the employees need to be paid their salaries on monthly basis while no expenses are incurred on the bridge operations.
The charges which became effective from May 14 last year range from 300/- to 75,000/-, pedestrians will cross free of charge while the indicative price for bicycle users is 300/-.
For two-wheeler motorcycles, riders will have to pay 600/- while tricycle push carts, 'guta', three-wheeled motorcycles (bajaji) and saloon cars will have to part with 1,500/- only. For vehicles such as pickups (two tonnes) and station wagons, drivers will have to pay 2,000/- while mini-buses carrying up to 15 passengers will be charged 3,000/-.
The rest are vehicles carrying above 15 up to 29 passengers will be charged some 5,000/-, vehicles carrying more than 29 passengers, tractors without trailer and vehicles above two to seven tonnes will pay 7,000/-.
Tractors with trailer and vehicles above seven to 15 tonnes (10,000/-) and those from 15 to 20 tonnes will have to pay 15,000/-, while those above 20 up to 30 tonnes will pay 20,000/-.Vehicles carrying heavy loads will have to pay 75,000/- apart from obtaining permits from the Ministry of Works, Transport and Communications.