Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA) number plates for water vessels will enable owners and fisherfolk to access loan facilities and insurance.
KMA team led by North Coast Region Coordinator Alex Munga Monday paid a courtesy call to Tana River County Commissioner Mbogai Rioba where they briefed him on their mission of conducting public participation on the new vessel identification and mapping system.
The Authority expects to roll out the unique identification system to seaworthy and compliant vessels before June next year and they are currently conducting public participation with different stakeholders.
The KMA numbering system is intended to identify vessels for safety and security purposes and to also relate a vessel to its owners.
“The vessel numbering system aims at enhancing safety, security and enables boat owners to access loan facilities and insurance which it is not possible now,’’ said KMA North Coast coordinator Munga.
The number plates will have colours to differentiate the vessels. Yellow will be used to identify vessels ferrying tourists, purple for cargo, orange for local passengers and green for fishing vessels.
“This will support enforcement or the governance of the vessels. If you have a license to do fishing from the county government then yours will be green if you are licensed by the Tourism Regulatory Authority the colour is yellow,’’ Alex Munga
County Commissioner Mbogai Rioba said the numbering system will enhance enforcement efforts along with the county 72 kilometres Coastline by identifying Kenya’s and foreign vessels.
The Authority has postponed public participation with Beach Management Units, Fisherfolk and boat owners in Tana Delta Sub County due to the surge of COVID 19 cases and directives by the government on public meetings.