New Likoni Ferry starts journey from Turkey for July launch

MV Jambo in Turkey. PHOTO | COURTESY
MV Jambo in Turkey. PHOTO | COURTESY 

A new ferry set to operate at the Likoni channel has started its journey from Turkey to the country.

The Business Daily on Monday learnt that MV Jambo had been loaded on a ship at the Ozata shipyard in Turkey on its way to Kenya. It is expected to help decongest the channel through which about 330,000 people and 5,000 vehicles pass every day.

Likoni channel is also the main route for tourists from the airport heading to and from hotels on the popular South Coust beaches.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is set to launch MV Jambo in July as part of his government’s efforts to improve infrastructure.

“Our team is in Turkey to inspect the progress and the construction which is complete for the first ferry. The shipment of MV Jambo will start early June and by July 27 we expect it to be at our premises. MV Safari will be delivered on November 3,” said KFS boss Bakari Gowa in a past interview.

The vessels were bought from Turkey at Sh1.9 billion and will bring the total number of ferries at the Likoni crossing to seven.

In March the government revived services at Mtongwe after a 10-year lull.

Each ferry will have a seating capacity of 1,391 passengers and a designated area for people living with disability, the elderly and expectant women.

Currently, commuters must stand while travelling in some of the ferries including MV Nyayo, MV Harambee and MV Kilindini.