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ATCL ferries 200 stuck passengers

AIR Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL), on Friday evening ferried 200 passengers who were stuck in the country due to a travel ban imposed by the government to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The National carrier, Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL), had announced suspension of all its international flights in response to the Covid-19 outbreak with effect from March 25.

ATCL Managing Director, Eng Ladislaus Matindi, said ATCL would bring back 180 Tanzanians from India and were looking forward to making similar and other trips when the need arose.

Eng Matindi added that after suspension of travel services, many passengers were unable to travel from Tanzania and India, resulting in the need for transport.

“During this course of the fight against Covid-19, ATCL has continued to provide passenger and freight services to at least 11 airports in the country,” he explained.

He added that they had introduced several routes to transport passengers and cargo to Comoros and India by and cargo weighing 15 tons and on the return flight on May 30, they expect to carry 15 tons.

He thanked the Tanzanian government for continuing to make the business environment friendly even during this Covid-19 pandemic.

“We wish to thank the government of India through its embassy for the cooperation, especially in this period when they have not been allowed to run domestic flights in their country,” he said.

Eng Matindi noted that ATCL will issue an official statement for resuming all canceled trips especially through the media when the time comes and not otherwise.

He further said that while continuing to run domestic flights, they will continue to take all health precautions during this period of the Covid-19 pandemic as directed by the Ministry of Health.

On his part, the country’s High Commissioner to Tanzania, Mr Sanjiv Kohli, said they are happy that about 200 passengers returning to Mumbai; This is delightful news.

I take this opportunity for us to thank the Tanzanian government and Civil Aviation Authority. Mr Kohil said India would continue to work with Tanzania to strength longstanding relations, and said this flight route was a manifestation of the partnership.

“These people are going back home for different reasons, including medical and business reasons and some of them expect to come back in Tanzania,” he explained.

He added that it took them a week to facilitate this trip and everyone was very supportive as India.

One of the passengers, Mr Ally Gani, said the situation in Tanzania was good and he was delighted to be back home and continue with his business.

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Author: CHRISTINA MSEJA

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