Move over junk ferries, MV Jambo is here
Compared to the old ferries that have been plying the Kenyan coastal waters for years, the new MV Jambo, is a state-of-the-art vessel like none other.
As such there was pomp and colour during the arrival of the vessel from Turkey which docked at KFS on Thursday at 3pm aboard Eagle Heavy Offshore Transport (OHT).
It was received by senior government officials including Cabinet Secretaries for Transport and Infrastructure James Macharia and his counterpart in the Tourism docket Najib Balala.
And on Saturday, the beautiful ferry, which is a sight to behold with its bluish colour symbolizing the Indian Ocean waters, is expected to be officially commissioned by the Head of State.
Unlike, the other five ferries stationed at the Likoni channel where vehicles have to share space with the passengers, the new vessel has segmented sections exclusively for passengers and vehicles.
It has the lower deck which houses vehicles while the upper part is for the passengers.
The new vessels can carry 64 vehicles and will have two rescue and emergency boats on board.
Under the deck there is an accommodation facility for the captain and the crew, kitchen, the ferry was built at the Ozata Shipyard in Turkey.
It also has a designated area for disabled people, the elderly and expectant women and is equipped with modern washrooms and other facilities for people with special needs.
Unlike the old ferries – including MV Nyayo, MV Harambee and MV Kilindini – MV Jambo is furnished with plastic seats with sufficient legroom for the passengers’ comfort.
The vessels were purchased from Turkey at Sh2 billion and will bring the total number of ferries at the Likoni crossing to seven.
Currently the vessels ferry people from the Likoni side to the Island side. A second ferry, the MV Safari will be delivered on November.