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Tour operators oppose cable car plan on Mount Kilimanjaro

Mount Kilimanjaro is one of Tanzania tourist attractions. PHOTO | FILE

Summary

  • The operators say the plan would degrade Mount Kilimanjaro’s prime tourism status and the environment

Tour operators in Tanzania have strongly protested the move to install cable cars on Africa’s highest mountain, calling on Members of Parliament to intervene.

The operators say the plan would degrade Mount Kilimanjaro’s prime tourism status and the environment.

At a meeting held in the northern city of Arusha, a gateway to safari destinations including Mt Kilimanjaro, they also called on President Samia Suluhu Hassan to intervene, saying the cable car facility would reduce incomes for expedition planners and other stakeholders.

Tanzania Association of Tour Operators (Tato) chairman Willy Chambulo said they would lose revenues as tourists would only require a few hours to reach the peak instead of trekking for five to seven days.

The managing director of Zara Adventures, Ms Zainab Ansell, said the cable cars would deny Tanzanian youths employment as porters.

The government is banking on the cable car facility to unlock its potential to attract tourists who cannot hike to Africa’s tallest peak on foot.

It gave the Tanzania National Parks Authority (Tanapa) the green light to invest in the project last year.

Mount Kilimanjaro is about 5,895 metres above sea level, with roughly 50,000 climbers from across the world attempting to reach its summit annually.