Girl gets Sh40m scholarship


Natural Resources and Tourism minister Lazaro Nyalandu (right), congratulates trainee pilot Anna Laroya (left) after she was given $25,000 for further training by the Managing Director of Game Frontiers (T) Ltd, Mr Mohsin Abdallah (centre) in Arusha recently. PHOTO |LUCAS LIGANGA.

By  Lucas Liganga,The Citizen Reporter

IN SUMMARY

  • The soft-spoken girl, who completed her initial training stint in South Africa, is set to undergo pilot training in the United States
  • Tanzania has only pilot schools in Dar es Salaam that train for Private Pilot Licences (PPL) for private uses–there is no commercial school. Recruitment of new pilots depends on airlines own set standards. But, in Tanzania, basically most pilots come from America, South Africa and Uganda, with some holding commercial licences with about 200 hours of flying. The airlines then mend the newly recruited pilots according to the internally set standards, which correspond to international standards.

Arusha. Thirty-two-year-old female trainee pilot Anna Laroya was all smiles on December 17 when she was awarded a $25,000 (about Sh42.5 million) scholarship by firms in the photographic and hunting tourism industry to pursue her training in the United States.

“I thank God. And this scholarship is a challenge for me to complete my training and become an accomplished pilot,” she said.

Ms Laroya is a wildlife management officer at the Arusha-based Tanzania Wildlife Research Institute (Tawiri).

The soft-spoken Laroya completed her initial training stint in South Africa in 2010 and now with $25,000 she will proceed to the United States to complete her training.

Ms Laroya is not destined to fly commercial flights to world capitals, but her mission will be to fly wildlife research and anti-poaching aircraft.

The money given to her was part of over $50,000 donated by 15 members of the Tanzania Hunting Operators Association (Tahoa) and the Tanzania Safari Operators Association (Tasoa) to cover the training of the pilot, $10,000 as condolences to bereaved families of four pilots who were killed in a helicopter accident in Dar es Salaam recently, and the remaining for wildlife research at Tawiri.

The donation was presented to the minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Lazaro Nyalandu, by the managing director of Game Frontiers (T) Limited, Mr Mohsin Abdallah.

Mr Abdallah said Tahoa and Tasoa will work closely with the government and other stakeholders towards wildlife conservation in the country.

“Today we have decided to contribute towards the training of our young pilot to enhance our anti-poaching activities and to improve research in wildlife,” said Mr Abdallah, adding: “The contributions will be continuous.”

Mr Nyalandu thanked members of Tahoa and Tasoa for their contribution, saying his ministry was working tirelessly to increase the number of pilots and helicopters to be involved in anti-poaching activities.

The minister reiterated his distress at the deaths of the four young pilots who died while on training, saying: “Their lives were cut short while their services were mostly needed.”

“The government will continue to boost its air power in the fight against poaching,” said Mr Nyalandu, adding that his ministry was in the process of acquiring a total of seven pilots and not less than five helicopters in the near future.