A new supplier of buses for the Dar es Salaam Rapid Transit (Dart) system, will start operations before the end of May 2021. Said the minister of State in the President’s Office (Regional Administration and Local Government).
The minister of State in the President’s Office (Regional Administration and Local Government), Mr Selemani Jafo. Said in February 2020, the government – through Dart – floated a tender for the supply, operation and maintenance of buses.
“The winner of the tender has already procured the buses. There are a few internal processes and some legal procedures which are to be completed within three to four months from today.” He said as he was answering a question from a Dar es Salaam resident who was complaining over Udart transport challenges.
The 12-year concession bus operator will be responsible to supply, operate and maintain buses for the Dart system at its 27 stations. Four feeder stations, three connector stations, three pedestrian bridges, one depot and 21 kilometres of bus routes.
The new operator will replace the current Usafiri Dar es Salaam Rapid Transit (Udart). A short time provider trusted to provide the service in the transitional period of the project.
“It is true that the rapid transit buses are not enough compared to the current demand. The project designed to supply 305 buses; but Udart supplied only 140 buses amid a rapid growth of demand,” he said.
According to him, as of Saturday, at least 30 buses were out of order.
“I have directed Udart to repair them as soon as possible. They have already imported maintenance equipment so that the buses can be operational again,” he noted.
Mr Jafo said, when the project started the demand population was 70,000 commuters per day. But the number has jumped to between 350,000 and 400,000 per day.
“The new operator will bring in 305 buses in the system, so the challenge will soon be a thing of the past,” he said.
According to him, the supplier is not responsible for supplying buses on the other Dart routes, including that of Mbagala.
By Alfred Zacharia / The citizen