CONSTRUCTION of modern bus terminals and stands in the country is among the strategic projects aimed at boosting revenue collection in councils and reducing their dependence on the central government.
Some of the bus terminals have been completed and are operational while others are at various stages of implementation.
The bus terminals which have so far been completed and their cost in brackets are Magufuli at Mbezi Luis in Dar es Salaam (50bn/-) Dodoma Bus Terminal at Nzuguni (24bn), Msamvu in Morogoro (16bn/-) and Korogwe Bus Stand which has been named after Eng Ambassador John Kijazi, among others.
Besides boosting councils’ revenue, the bus terminals have also changed the scenery of the areas.
The implementation of the projects is in line with the ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi Election Manifesto 2020-2025 which directs the government to improve transportation environment and increase councils’ revenue by constructing bus terminals and stands in various councils in the country.
Recently, Vice-President Dr Philip Mpango launched another modern bus terminal and truck parking lot at Nyamhongolo in Mwanza Region, which according to the Regional Commissioner Adam Malima it will help to reduce congestion and increase revenue in Ilemela Municipal Council.
The project is expected to bring in more than 2bn/- revenue per year for the area due to the investment made in the construction of its infrastructure and thus increase the income for the council.
Dr Mpango said that the completion of the bus terminal should be translated into changes in revenue collection. The two projects have been executed at a cost of 26.6bn/-.
He directed the regional leadership to shun favouritism when distributing the business stalls at the bus terminal, stressing transparency and inclusiveness in distributing the stalls by considering special groups such as people with disabilities, youth and women.
Dr Mpango called upon wananchi to protect the infrastructures at the bust terminal including water systems, electricity, and toilets.
The VP further explained that the sixth phase government is committed to continue strengthening transport infrastructure through execution of various projects.
Dr Mpango described Mwanza as a strategic region assuring the residents that the government leaders will continue to work hard to bring development in the area.
On his part Ilemela District Council Executive Director Eng Modest Apolinary said that the project aimed at boosting revenue, attract investments and increase the number of traders within the Ilemela municipality
He added that the bus terminal will also improve transportation for passengers, cargo and increase employment opportunities whereby the terminal is expected to provide 1,300 jobs.
Eng Apolinary, said the construction of the large modern bus stand in the Mwanza City started in 2019 where the total cost of the projects is 26.6 bn/- whereby the work was done by Stecol Corporation, a company from China, under the consultant expert Bureau for Industrial Cooperation (BICO) from the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM).
He said the funds used in the construction came from the central government, where the bus stand construction cost 16.69 bn/- and parking 8.23 bn/-, while the expert consultant was paid 1.72 bn/-.
The director of the municipality said that the stand has a passenger building with 10 supermarkets, 46 ticket booths, 2 banks, 2 big supermarkets, 3 restaurants, 72 small shops and a parking lot which can accommodate 120 buses at a time.
Also a commercial building has a small car parking area. Eng Apolinary said that the area has a storage warehouse, a garage, a hostel and a place to load 80 trucks at a time while saying that the benefit of the project is to increase the council’s income, attract investment and the number of traders.
He also added that another benefit is to improve the environment of transportation and transportation of passengers and cargo for the citizens of other regions in this country and neighbouring countries.
Eng Apolinary also said that there are 1,300 jobs that will be available in the area if all the infrastructures get investors.
Some residents in Ilemela Municipality have expressed optimism with the new bus terminal saying it will greatly reduce congestion at Buzuruga area.
An agent with Champion Bus Company Mr Wilson Said said that the bus terminal will attract more passengers because it is closer to Magu, Ilemela and Nyamagana districts.
A driver with Neja Transport MrYesaya Paschal said the bus terminal assures them security because it has been fixed with a security system and it is also guarded by security companies.
A food vendor Ms Aisha Juma said the terminal will help her to get more consumers because many people will be using the facility.
Tabling the budget estimates for his docket in august House, the Minister of State in the President’s Office, Regional Administration and Local Governments Mr Innocent Bashungwa said that in 2021/2022 financial year a total of 68.70bn/- was approved for implementation of various strategic projects among others construction of modern bus terminals to enable councils to boot revenue collection.
He said the move aims at reducing councils’ dependence on central government.
Mr Bashungwa informed the National Assembly that construction of a bus terminal and truck parking lot at Nyamhongolo in Ilemela municipality has been completed.