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 Politics: Gambian politics
 Banjul/Barra Ferry service still not ideal.
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12260 Posts

Posted - 26 Aug 2013 :  14:24:05  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message
This problem has been going on for some time and still has not been resolved.I am sure there are many reasons for this that are not in the public domain,perhaps Foroyaa's latest investigation MAY find out the current situation,this piece highlights the current dissatisfaction of travelers using the limited service.Although far from ideal IF the other 2 ferries have been taken out of service for safety reasons,by GPA then that is good news,and the hope is obviously that they can be made safe to operate quickly,MONEY is the usual problem.
Let's see what Foroyaa can come up with in their latest investigation.

"When this reporter visited the Ferry Management Service at GPA to talk to its PRO on the current state of the service and when it will be ameliorated, he was told that the person was on an official mission up country. Foroyaa will pursue the issue to find answers on what is responsible for this seemingly intractable problem and what measures are being considered to redress the situation to enable passengers to enjoy a reliable, efficient and safe ferry service."

By Kebba Camara
Foroyaa:Published on Thursday, 22 August 2013

For over a week now, traffic at the busy Banjul-Barra ferry crossing has been slower due to the fact that it is only one ferry that is plying the sea. An announcement was made earlier by the Ferry Service management under the Gambia Ports Authority (GPA) in the media that the services of two out of the three ferries are being suspended. Since then, the passengers who do not have an alternative have been subjected to waiting for longer hours to cross with the only ferry which is available. Visiting the ferry terminal in Banjul yesterday, Wednesday,21 August, this reporter interviewed some weary looking passengers at the waiting room.

The general concerns being expressed by them are that all the ferries at this crossing take a longer time to transport passengers from one point to the other, but added that two operating at the same time makes the situation relatively better.
Alieu Joof, a regular commuter from the North Bank Region, said the slowness of the ferries sometimes compel them to stay in Banjul until very late just to wait for a ferry to cross with to get home. “Depending on time consideration and the financial means, I sometimes join the boats to cross which has some safety implications,” lamented Joof. Another commuter, Fatou Manneh, who also complained about the same inconveniences, said they are calling on the relevant authorities to come to the aid of the people of Nuimi whose livelihood is linked with crossing to Banjul on a daily basis and provide with regular and safe ferry services.”
Due to the unavoidable delay, one is bound to experience problems as many passengers were seen going for the wooden boats which are faster but more expensive.
Talking to the captain of one of the wooden boats, he told this reporter that they are normally very busy especially when there is only one ferry operating because some passengers are sometimes in a hurry and could not wait for the ferry which sometimes takes more than an hour to cross the sea. He said they charge D25 per passenger as opposed to the D15 paid for a ferry ticket.
When this reporter visited the Ferry Management Service at GPA to talk to its PRO on the current state of the service and when it will be ameliorated, he was told that the person was on an official mission up country. Foroyaa will pursue the issue to find answers on what is responsible for this seemingly intractable problem and what measures are being considered to redress the situation to enable passengers to enjoy a reliable, efficient and safe ferry service.

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.


12260 Posts

Posted - 30 Aug 2013 :  16:40:30  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message the opposition politicians have decided to pass on the concerns of their constituents by using the media and make a statement for publication unusually powerful unambigious words from a Gambian politician.

"According to the UDP leader, these are the problems facing the country, ‘‘but the government of the day is using homosexuality as the biggest problem in this country, trying to divert the attention of the people from the current realities on the ground.’’

In his opinion, ‘‘government has lost control of the situation of the country and should now embark on a vigorous campaign to tell the people that it has failed to address urgent problems facing them.’’

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.

Edited by - toubab1020 on 30 Aug 2013 16:43:59
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11549 Posts

Posted - 05 Sep 2013 :  21:08:58  Show Profile Send Momodou a Private Message
Scary! I Wonder who is going to be blamed when a disaster occurs with these un-sea worthy ferries.


Kanilai Ferry stuck at Sea from Friday till Sunday

By Alhagie F.S. Sora

Foroyaa: Published on Thursday, 05 September 2013

The ferry named Kanilai operating between Banjul and Barra terminals was reportedly stuck in the sea since Friday August 30th 2013 at about 2pm up to the morning of Sunday, September 1st. The ferry departed from the Barra terminal at a time when it was raining. This information prompted this reporter to visit the Barra terminal to confirm the story and observe the situation of the commuters. Speaking to an affected passenger, Mr. Momodou Colley Jammeh, said he boarded the ferry few minutes before 14:00 hrs. He said as the ferry departed in the rain, the ferry could no longer be controlled and it was eventually left to the caprice of the wind which swept it away.

According to Mr. Jammeh, a passenger, the ferry was pushed away towards Juffreh instead of moving towards Banjul. He said the ferry finally got stuck on rocks adjacent to the Barra car park in the sea and could not move any more. ‘’We were in the ferry up to 1am on Saturday when we saw one canoe coming towards the ferry to rescue us. This operation was slow since the number of passengers in the ferry exceeds the capacity of the boat, so the evacuation was not completed until 3am,’’ narrated Mr. Jammeh, a passenger who was in the Kanilai ferry that got stuck in the sea on Friday. Mr. Jammeh added that they spent the remaining night at the Barra terminal waiting room until Saturday morning, August 31st.

This passenger further informed this paper that o Saturday morning, the ferry named ‘Johe’ arrived at the Barra terminal few minutes before 8am on its first trip from Banjul. He said due to the crowded nature of the terminal at the time, the ferry could not carry all the passengers at the same time.
Amie Conteh, another passenger pointed out that it is only God that ‘helped’ them otherwise they would have spent the whole night at sea. She said she was travelling with her three kids without food. She said the staff of the ferry eventually distributed some loaves of bread amongst them in the ferry. She added that she suffered a lot before they finally reach the shore.

A staff of the Gambia Ports Authority was approached to shed light on the issue, but she said she is not the spokesperson of the authority. However, she said she could only state her personal views on the situation. She asserted that this is not the first time such a thing has happened to the ferry and added that the Authority is doing all what it can to make this history.
She added that usually, those of them on duty suffer a lot when such things happen and that they end up spending their meager resources on food for the passengers because they are their customers. She said they cannot afford to see them suffering. ‘’This is why we bought bread, water and biscuits and distributed them among the passengers at our own expense,’’ said a staff at the Barra ferry terminal. Meanwhile a canoe owner who was also approached for comment, Pa Modou Manneh explained their side of the story regarding the case. He indicated that most of the canoes have been spoilt during the rainy season. He said this is one reason why they stopped operating any time they suspect that it may rain or when becomes windy.

‘’When this incident happened; we wanted to go and assist, but the condition of our canoes could not allow us. I sacrificed and rescued the passengers from the sea up,’’ said Pa Modou Manneh, a canoe operator at the Banjul/Barra ferry terminals. The way forward, he said, is for the management to buy new ferries to provide safe and reliable ferry services for their passengers. He cautioned that if that is not done, this can lead to a serious accident.

‘’The problem of Africa is that they would see smoke coming out, but would not intervene until it results in fire; that is the time they would be ready to spend billions on disaster, which they could have spent on mitigation and preparedness. Manneh reminded the authorities of a previous, but a similar problem when people with cars had to spend the night in the sea till the next day because the ferry was stuck in the sea.

Source: Foroyaa

A clear conscience fears no accusation - proverb from Sierra Leone
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12260 Posts

Posted - 19 Sep 2013 :  21:19:03  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message

UPDATE on Reasons for faliure,maybe:

Published on Thursday, 19 September 2013 17:51 | Written by Mamadou Dem
By Mamadou Dem
Chief Inspector Amadou Kujabi of the Gambia Police Force (GPF), yesterday testified before Acting Principal Magistrate, Lamin Mbaye of the Banjul Magistrates’ Court that the Gambia Ports Authority (GPA) was granted the sum of D150,000,000 (One Hundred and Fifty Million Dalasi) by the Social Security Housing and Finance Corporation (SSHFC)to procure new ferries and D30,000,000 (Thirty Million Dalasi) to buy engines for the old ferries. Mr Kujabi disclosed the said amount in his evidence in chief as the third prosecution witness in the ongoing criminal trial involving Hali Abdoulie Gai, former Acting GPA Managing Director and Abdoulie Tambedou, former Managing Director of the same institution.

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.
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12260 Posts

Posted - 04 Oct 2013 :  00:20:33  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message
The New Engines and bits handed over according to reports in the D.O.
Very Good news,let's hope that the NEW ENGINES and propulsion gear get fitted very quickly so THE AVERAGE GAMBIAN is able to carry on his life as before and the North Bank is no longer isolated from the Capital Banjul.

4 brand new engines handed over to enhance ferry services

Thursday, October 03, 2013

Four brand new engines and propulsion systems for the Johe Ferry that plies Banjul-Barra crossing point were Wednesday morning handed over to the officials of The Gambia Ports Authority (GPA) by the Taiwanese ambassador to The Gambia.

The engines are part of a US$1,625, 384.80 (one million six hundred twenty-five thousand three and eight-four dalasis and eighty bututs) grant meant to procure new engines for four ferries plying Banjul-Barra, and Yellitenda-Bambatenda.

Jointly funded by the Republic of China (Taiwan) and The Gambia government, the procurement of these engines is aimed at enhancing ferry services by strengthening the technical capacity of the ferries to be able to provide safe, reliable, and efficient services to the traveling public.

Speaking at the occasion, the Taiwanese ambassador to The Gambia, His Excellency Samuel Chen, described the project as important for the two allies. Informing that it was President Jammeh who proposed this project to his government, the Taiwanese diplomat underscored the importance of transportation in the daily lives of the people.

“The engines are outdated and there is the need to replace them. The grant project will be used for the replacement of diesel engines for Johe, Kanilai, Farafenni, and Soma ferries, as well as the replacement of hydraulic aggregate for Kanilai and Johe ferries,” he explained.

While reiterating that the total amount of the funding is US$1,625, 384.80, the ambassador informed that the government of Taiwan has already paid 50% in December, 2012, with the other 50% expected to be paid after the arrival of all the engines and their subsequent installations.

“The Gambia ferries would be equipped with engines to enhance its maritime safety so as to better serve its peoples’ welfare and economic interests. It will promote an efficient transport network and safety of the passengers using the ferry services. This will reduce the amount of time needed to travel from one part to another,” he stated.

The director of Operations at The Gambia Ports Authority, Jerreh Jammeh, informed that the installation of these new engines that commenced yesterday, 3rd October is expected to last for a period of between 6 to 10 weeks. He explained that that during this period, the Kanilai Ferry shall be deployed to provide limited services along the Banjul/Barra crossing points.

Jammeh said as part of their strategies, the traveling public and the Ferry service customers, particularly drivers of heavy good vehicles and articulated trucks are advised to utilize the Trans-Gambia Highway. He used the opportunity to solicit the understanding and patience of the general during this period.

The Operations director used the opportunity to express his profound gratitude to the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the government of The Gambia for the interest manifested in the quest to improving the technical efficiency of the ferries. He underscored that the engines will go a long way in enhancing the capacity of the GPA to be able to deliver safe, efficient and reliable ferry services for the continued socio-economic development of the country.


"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.

Edited by - toubab1020 on 04 Oct 2013 00:22:17
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12260 Posts

Posted - 07 Jan 2014 :  10:24:22  Show Profile Send toubab1020 a Private Message
No change here then,according to this newspaper report.

"Simple is good" & I strongly dislike politics. You cannot defend the indefensible.
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