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MP: Foreign investor plundering minerals

19th June 2012
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Hamad Rashid Mohamed

A member of parliamentary committee for Finance and Economy Hamad Rashid Mohamed yesterday accused a foreign investor Marc Rene Roelandts of possessing six traveling documents and abusing Tanzanians.

The MP requested the House to form a special committee comprising members from security and defense, ministry of energy and minerals and finance ministry to investigate the allegations against the investor.

“We should not accept people who evade taxes and abuse Tanzanians …there are elements of espionage in the business of this investor…I request the formation of special committee to investigate these reports.

Mohamed who is also Wawi legislator (CUF) claimed that the investor was once ordered to leave the country by the former Home Affairs Minister Shamsi Vuai Nahodha but surprisingly the investor has returned and continued with his businesses in Shinyanga region.

He said Roelandts holds three Belgian passports with registration numbers EG 125092, EH 096287 and EI 590081 and two Burundi ones with number EE 132212 and EF 558746.

He said the investor was living in the country with a permit grade ‘A’ he obtained in November 2011 but he came into the country since 2005 and his nationality was surrounded by controversies.

The law maker made the accusations while debating for the 2012/13 budget proposals tabled in the National Assembly last week by Finance Minister William Mgimwa.

Mohamed claimed that the investor whose information is in security and defense departments once insulted the former Commission of Minerals who is currently Igunga Member of Parliament Dr Peter Kafumu, but no action was taken against him.

The MP alleged that the investor through his company Mineral Extractions Technologies Ltd (Mineral-Ex-Tech) exports 15kg of gold every week and earns a lot of money without the knowledge of the government.

He said Roelandts had been buying soil containing minerals from mining sites and cleaning it to get gold which he exports outside the country, adding that he was supposed to pay up to 6bn/- as tax to the government.

The lawmaker said he intends to submit to the Speaker of the National Assembly copies of reports of the investor although he said some previous information of the investor at the immigration office were nowhere to be seen.

He said according to reports it was impossible for such documents for a person accused for breaching the country’s laws to disappear claiming that he has a strong network which help to hide his wrong doings.

“He dared to say that even though the matter is being taken to parliament it will not go further because the country is in his hand together with her leaders, saying members of parliament were just politicians who had no work to do,” Mohamed claimed.

Earlier, a Member of Parliament for Sumve Richard Ndassa (CCM), when debating the budget accused the national intelligence and Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau of failing to execute their responsibilities as required.

“The national intelligence is not active. Giraffes are transported abroad through airports but it has not taken any action,” he said, adding that PCCB are also inactive until they are woken up by the parliament. “Don’t they see these corruptions?” he asked.


 

He was commenting on financial accountability, naming ministries leading in violating financial laws and regulations as finance, education, agriculture and regional administration and local government.

He also called on cotton growers in 42 districts which cultivate the crop not to sell if the price won’t be 1000/- per kilo.

Meanwhile the Parliamentary Committee for Finance and Economy has challenged the government to strengthen coordination in economic management to minimise high cost of living instead of concentrating on price stability management mostly affected by inflation.

The Committee chairman Andrew Chenge made the remark here yesterday while tabling the committee report on Economic Status 2011, National Development Plan 2012/13, evaluation of 2011/12 budget and recommendations for 2012/13 budget.

The committee noted that despite 6.4 percent economic growth, the majority of Tanzanians were complaining of higher cost of living.

Chenge said up to April 2012 inflation rose to 18.7 percent which was highly contributed by food prices.

He said that important food items like rice, maize flour, cooking oil and sugar were being used by majority of the people in the country whose income could not afford their prices. 

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
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