October 14, 2015 By Memunatu Bangura
In a bid to improve and provide safe and reliable sea transportation for passengers who are to catch flights to travel abroad, sea transport providers, Sea Coach Express, Saturday (10 October) launched a 72-seater passenger vessel that will be shuttling between Aberdeen and Targrin in Lungi.
Making statement at the launch ceremony, Chief Executive Officer of Sea Coach Express, Olusegun Jaji, said he started operations in Sierra Leone in 2008 as Pelican Water Taxi, being the pioneer of the concept of providing a water taxi service for passenger transfer to and from the Lungi International Airport.
Jaji said in 2009 they changed to Sea Coach Express and noted they had gone through hard times but his team had always worked very hard to provide water transportation to thousands of passengers over the years, and promised that he would not let them down.
He said they have been working with a good record, providing safe sea transportation for passengers going to and returning from abroad, adding that they have made lot of progress and they intend to take the Sea Coach Express across the world.
Minister of Transport and Aviation, Leonard Balogun Koroma, who represented President Ernest Bai Koroma, commended the company for changing their vessels over time to meet customers’ demand, with a continued determination to improving on water taxi passenger transfer service, as demanded by their passengers.
He said the letter of invitation sent to the president by the CEO of Sea Coach Express intimated that the 72-seater vessel would be named after the president in recognition of the enabling environment his administration had created for the operation of Sea Coach, which clearly demonstrates government’s commitment to provide services to its people and improve the image of the country as well as facilitate passenger transfer across the estuary.
“The fact that we are here today to launch a 72-seater boat fully air-conditioned with television and wi-fi service for added passenger comfort speaks volumes and goes to show that this government supports and will continue to support private investors who want to make a positive change in the country in line with the President’s Agenda for Prosperity,” he said.
He added that he believes in competition as such brings about value to services offered and the need to continue improving on customers’ services. He said his ministry and the government would always give their support to competition, so long as it was healthy.
He endorsed Sea Coach as the country’s reliable partner in water transportation to and from the sole international airport, as demonstrated throughout the Ebola outbreak when they continued to fully operate and serve not only the people of Sierra Leone but passengers travelling in and out of the country. He said the company has further demonstrated their commitment to the country by starting the elite service to match other competitions with bigger vessels, to enable faster safer and better service.