Chinese contractor on the defensive over Z’bar airport
A Chinese company has fended off criticism about the construction of terminal two (T2) at the Zanzibar airport.
Some construction experts allege that Beijing Construction Engineering Group (BCEG) Ltd did a shoddy work.
But top BCEG officials maintain that the construction met all required standards and specifications.
“Of course, like in any project, not everything can be perfect but in as far as the use and safety of T2 of Zanzibar Airport is concerned, we have no regrets,” BCEG general manager Geng Bingjian told The Citizen in Dar es Salaam on Thursday last week. “There is no problem with the use and functions of the terminal.”
Mr Geng was accompanied by finance manager Cheng Longhai when responding to allegations by some experts who claim that more funds are needed to provide a safe and efficient landing of aircraft at T2 of the Zanzibar Airport .
The experts argued that the facility had been constructed at the wrong level.
“In short, Terminal 2, meant for passengers at the airport has been constructed on an area that was meant to be an aircraft packing bay,” an expert, who preferred not be named told The Citizen in Dar es Salaam recently.
According to the source, a comprehensive study done by an independent firm has also established that Zanzibar Airport’s T2 has been constructed at the wrong level and more funds are required to rectify the error. The source said it was due to the technical mistakes that the terminal gets filled with water when it rains.
But Mr Bingjian said: “We met all the criteria and the general alignment of the structures to allow for safe landing...Ours is a company that is owned by the government of China and therefore, there was no way we could undertake the project poorly.”
He said even the space on which the terminal is located was provided by the Zanzibar Airports Authority and that the designing of the project was done by Chinese North Civil Airport Design Company, a qualified firm in airport structures.
“Our record, and that of the designer speaks for itself....we have built terminals 1, 2 and 3 of Beijing Airport....we are among 200 top construction firms in the world and among top ten such firms in China...we are very credible,” said Mr Bingjian.