East Africa: Tpa Formalises Lake Victoria Dumb Ports

Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA) has already put in a formalization process five dumb ports in Lake Victoria in a bid to maximise controls.

The dumb ports await some legal process including enacted by various government institutions before becoming formal ports.

The process of formalising the five ports namely Nyehunge, Kamanga Ferry, Mkombozi A and B and Bijiri started since last year.

TPA Head of Operations Department in Lake Zone, Mr Francis Mwanga, said that they are also in the process of identifying five other ports for formalisation before end of June.

“These dumb ports activities mostly are ferrying passengers and cargoes to and from various islands of Lake Victoria… others are used by fishermen as landing camps,” Mr Mwanga said during the tour of some of the dump ports.

The delegation toured over the weekend some dumb ports namely Igabiro, Marehe, Kabindi, Rwazi, Nyamkazi, Ruhanga and Katunguru and Missenyi in Kagera region.

TPA has mapped out some 348 dump ports in Lake Tanganyika alone and only a handful are in process of being formalised.

‘Daily News’ during the tour saw some dhow-wharves, mostly dealing with fishing only activities.

However, some wananchi told TPA to set up jetties for both passengers and cargoes to ease boarding and landing while avoid unwanted accidents.

The Katunguru Village Executive Officer (VEO), Mr Elizeus Tilwabahoile, said the construction of jetties will not only provide reliable landing and boarding but also attract more dhow-wharves to ply around lake ports.

“If improved the Katunguru port will trigger an increase in revenues because is among the main exit for Lake Victoria fishing products,” Mr Tilwabahoile said.

The VEO said once improved the port will attract more fishmongers to use it while encouraging people’s interaction. To beginning with the government should immediately construct a cargo-shed.

Some 300 passengers are estimated to use the Katunguru port in each 14 days of fishing circle–dark days–a month and handles 400 bags sardines.

Mr Tilwabahoile said the village is collecting 300/- per kilogramme of fish and 100/- per kilogramme sardines.

The Bukoba District Fishing Officer, Mr Daniel Kuboja, said Marehe is in serious need of improved facilities which some were badly damaged by heavy rains.

In 2019 TPA said they want to formalise the entire country dumb ports in a bid to control the flow of goods in and outside the country as well as checking landing of undocumented persons.

TPA said various items are shipped in through dumb or unrecognized entry points include sugar, cooking oil, cement, timber, as well as facilitating the export of crops and minerals, operations which upset revenue projections and disturb the market by landing untaxed goods, sold at significantly lower prices.

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