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Eddie’s part of the Kairos scouting trip report to Tanzania

Lake MalawiOur aim was to investigate what the legalities is concerning launching a boat on Lake Nyassa and to understand the logistics involved. This document will report our findings under these two headings.

Legalities
We were open to launching in both Tanzania and Malawi, but preferred Tanzania as the ministry to be done would be on Tanzanian soil. We therefore drove to Mbeya, Tanzania where we first met Ps Daminius Thomas who is a key church leader in the city. He accompanied us for the rest of our time in the country and was very helpful and respected. He got us to see the provinsial administrator. After we told him the vision, he advised us to see the customs department and to travel to Kyela to see the district comissioner.

Customs
We told them that we want to use the boat on the lake for 2 years. This department was very helpful and advised us as follows. There is a 20% levy for importing boats, but we could apply for exemption since it is religious work. This however is something that would mean us “donating” the boat to the PAG church. We cannot apply for this exemption as WMC since we are not registered in the country. We could possibly “donate” it to AFMIN. The Ps Daminius is the AFMIN rep of the provinve and is of the PAG church. The application for exemption takes 1 month and will have to be done quickly. We need to send a Bill of ladding and a valuation invoice to Mbeya so that the application may be lodged. In our opinion, there is no way we can get the boat into the country and keep it there for 2 years without passing through the customs process. There are confiscated cars for Africa standing at the border posts. The freight forwarding company must help us clearing Kairos through all the countries is will travel, but we need to be ready to “check it into” Tanzania.

Border issues and Boat Registration
We travelled to Kyela where we met the district comissioner. It was a miracle that we could just walk in and see her. She opened up the doors for us and even summoned the head of fisheries to come and see us. Within an hour we knew all we needed. After asking various officials, we realized that we could register Kairos as a Tanzania boat, use it on the lake and have no problems from the Malawian authorities. The boat’s registration would cost about $50 a year and takes 1 day to do. The fisheries department then took us to Itungi port where we planned to launch Kairos.

ItungiThe launch site
The road to Itungi is about 15km and is reasonable. We should get Kairos there. The launch site is basically just a part of the lake shore that has been cleared. It is soil that has a bit of stones in it. The photos will show that it is wide and deep enough. The port officials, whose tel numbers we have, said we must phone a month before Kairos arrives and they will clear that area of old boats. The site is being used by WWF to launch their boat, a 30ft cat ski-boat. Our recommendation is that the launch method be discussed and planned so that the needed equipment be taken. The method used to launch her at Roodeplaat dam will not work as the surface at Itungi is soil.


Transporting Kairos to Tanzania

We travelled through Botswana since the reports on Zimbabwe was not too hot. The road up to Kasane in the north is great. Crossing over to Zambia however is a challenge. There is a ferry that takes a fully laden truck and 4 cars at a time. We measured it and found is wide enough to carry Kairos. The loading width was 3,2m. Weight is no problem. Travelling through Zambia, the biggest challenge is the never ending roadblocks. We had to fend off at least once traffic officer who tried to get a bribe. There is still homework to be done concerning the requirements of Botswana, Zambia and Tanzania for abnormal loads. This is important since parts of the road is very narrow. The first part of the road into Tanzania is under construction but if driven slowly will not be a problem. Fuel between Lusaka and the Tanzanian border is a challenge and fuel will have to be carried to drive this 800km stretch. The group travelling with Kairos will have to be rigged to sleep anywhere from campsites, to local villages along the road. Someone should plan this part carefully.

General
We are confident that the best place to launch, register and operate Kairos from is Tanzania. Especially since the targeted people live on the Tanzanian shore of the lake. The crew will have to get Tanzanian missionary visas. We have favour with the government officials and the local church. God truly went before us and led us to the right people.

 
 
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