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Minister lobbies for railway transportation

DELIBERATE efforts should be made to make sure that Tanzania makes use of the railway system and reduce the number of lorries on the roads.

This was said in Dar es Salaam yesterday by the Minister of Works, Transport and Communication, Dr. Isack Kamwele during the official launch of Huawei’s ‘Tanzania for talents Cultivation and Development’ programme, where he said that by doing this, it will also reduce the number of road accidents on the country’s highways.

The minister said that the TAZARA railway which was built by strong support of the Chinese people is currently underused, saying that when President John Magufuli appointed him as the minister in the transport sector, he vowed to make all efforts to make sure that the bulk of goods transported from one point to the next is done by rail.

“We have experienced grisly accidents on our roads for so many years and I believe the big presence of heavy commercial lorries carrying goods contributes a lot to this problem, that is why I am going to do everything in my power to make sure that a big percentage of goods is transported through the railway system,” said Dr. Kamwele.

The minister thanked Huawei for their initiative of selecting best students from the country’s higher learning institutions and taking them to China for ICT studies, saying that this will greatly boost the country’s industrial drive.

The programme, ‘Seeds for the Future’ provides an opportunity to 10 students from Tanzanian universities to visit Beijing and work out of Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen in China.

The minister further said that the government is implementing the National ICT Broadband Backbone (NICTBB), a national programme for the development of ICT infrastructure to enable all Tanzanians from all levels to be connected.

“We believe through cooperation between the government and Huawei in this project will enable us to reach out to many more people in the country,” the minister said.

On his part, the Huawei technologies Tanzania General Manager, Gao Mengdong, said that his company supports national ICT initiatives and local industries, saying that as a global company operating in over 170 countries and regions, Huawei integrates the best resources from around the world to build a global value chain.

“Here in Tanzania, we have carried out substantial cooperation with local suppliers, subcontractors and channel partners, bringing concrete benefits to our partners,” said Mr. Gao, adding that as an international ICT innovator, they are committed to sharing knowledge with their academic partners and creating opportunities for individuals, businesses and economies worldwide.

In her brief speech during the occasion, the Chinese Ambassador to Tanzania, Ms Wang Ke, said that China is committed to carry forward the good relationship nurtured by the founding fathers of the two nations, promising that her government will continue to support Tanzania in all its development programmes, including support in the industrial drive.

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Author: ANTHONY TAMBWE

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