By Fatoumatta K. Jallow
The Gambia Ports Authority’s Ferry Services Unit (GPA), has confirmed the operation of the Kanilai Ferry today Friday, 9th November 2018, after undergoing two months of maintenance at the GPA which Shipyard.
Nuha Gassama, the General Manager of the GPA Shipyard told Journalists at a Press briefing on Wednesday November 7th that the Kanilai Ferry went through general maintenance since September 10th 2018; that the Ferry was last brought to the Shipyard in February 2015, and since then, it did not go for maintenance.
Gassama said the maintenance was focused on two aspects, which is the body and engine of the ferry; that the management of the GPA deemed it fit to do proper maintenance on the ferry.
“We scrapped marine growths under the ferry, which can reduce the speed, and also clean and replaced the metal plates,” he said; that they have special machines that can test the plates to see to it that they are of quality; that they replace any plate which has lost quality, with a new one.
He said the maintenance was done, together with the Gambia Maritime Administration which is an authority to ensure the ferry, meets the required standards.
As part of the maintenance process, Gassama said the ferry was repainted especially the underneath, with necessary materials plastered on it, to protect the bottom against marine growth; that the deck is cleaned and painted as well. “The four engines were maintenance and now the ferry is safer and ready for operations,” he said.
Hali Abdoulie Gai, Deputy Managing Director on his part said, the greatest part of the work has been done, and gave assurance that the ferry will be plying Banjul Barra by Friday, today.
He said the maintenance was done by Gambians and with limited resources. This he said is “impressive”.