Saturday, 23 September 2017

SBL hailed for buying materials from local farmers

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By PIUS RUGONZIBWA in Mwanza

THE Mwanza Regional Commissioner Mr John Mongela has challenged industries to buy locally farmed and produced raw materials instead of importing them and deny local producers capacity to expand their businesses.

He made the appeal yesterday as he officiated at the launch of a new beer dubbed ‘Pilsner King’ produced by Serengeti Breweries Ltd (SBL) Mwanza plant targeting Lake Zone consumers.

The RC said it was normal for beverage industries to import raw materials in the past but of late the trend has changed with many of them now buying locally produced ones commending SBL for maintaining the practice.

“I would like to take this opportunity to commend our local industries like SBL for supporting our farmers by directly buying raw materials for their industries from them which contributes a lot in not only increasing income but also creating more direct and indirect employment,” he said.

Mr Mongela said buying locally produced raw materials in large quantities will gradually create competition among farmers and local manufacturers on issues of quality and standards of their products in order to attract foreign markets as well.

Read more. 

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

New ship plans at Lake Victoria finalised

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By FLORENCE MUGARULA

LAKE Victoria travellers have every reason to smile as the government is building a new ship and conduct major and minor rehabilitation to existing vessels in the lake. It is obvious that water transport is vital in the economic growth of any nation.

Transportation and the mobility it confers are linked to a level of output, employment and income
MV Victoria (2011)
within a national economy. In many developed countries, transportation accounts between 6 and 12 per cent of the GDP.

Business studies show that transportation accounts on aver age between 10 and 15 per cent of household expenditures, while it accounts around 4 per cent of the costs of each unit of output in manufacturing.

However, this figure varies greatly according to sub sectors. For some times now, vessels that ply Bukoba-Mwanza route have been grounded for services. However, the government through Marine Service Company Limited (MSCL) confirmed to the ‘Business Standard’ that everything is in place to set a new and bright dawn for Lake Victoria travellers.


Precision Air launches flights to Kahama

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By JIMMY LWANGILI

PRECISION Air launched flights to Kahama Airstrip in Kahama, Shinyanga Region, yesterday, making it the first airline to make scheduled flights to the airstrip, after it was handed to the government authorities for public use.

The Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE) listed airline will begin with three flights a week to the airstrip which was operated by Acacia Mining and used for charter flights.

The Shinyanga Regional Commissioner (RC), ZainabTareck, said the airstrip would stimulate business and economic activities in the district and neighbouring areas and help to unlock the great potential of the district to traders, investors and tourists.

“We are officially starting to use this airstrip after the Acacia Mining Tanzania handed it over to the government for the public uses," she said during the launch of the flights at the airstrip yesterday.

According to her, they approached Precision Air to start operations in the district since December, last year, until recently when preparations were finalised. Precision Air’s Corporate Affairs Manager, Mr Hillary Mremi, said by opening up Kahama route the corporate is living its slogan ‘You are why we fly’ through opening up routes which are meant to serve the demands of the public.

“There will be no need for passengers from Shinyanga and Kahama to drive all the way to Mwanza to catch their flight to Dar es Salaam. Our flights from Kahama will not only save time, but the cost of travel for the ordinary people and traders as well,” he said.

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Success as cotton weight cheating drops by 27pc

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By MOSES MATTHEW in Mwanza

AUTHORITIES have managed to reduce the level of cotton weight cheating from 34 per cent during 2015/2016 season to seven per cent in 2017 season.

Some farmers have been accused of tampering with the weight of their produce. In August, 2016, at least 30 farmers in Lake Zone were fined 10m/- for tampering with the weight of cotton. The Cotton Board of Tanzania (CBT) said farmers were punished for mixing cotton with sand and other materials
to increase weight.

The Mwanza Regional Weight and Measurement Agency (WMA) Manager, Mr Hemed Kipengile, told the ‘Daily News’ that the cheating had dropped after WMA and other stakeholders made follow ups and introduced mobile courts which charged and meted out punishments to culprits.

“The mobile courts helped to address the problems, all famers and traders who were involved in the dirty game were charged and punished accordingly,” he said when he visited various areas that produce and process cotton in the region.

Saturday, 26 August 2017

60bn/- deal to secure Dar airspace

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By JIMMY LWANGILI

TANZANIA Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA) and the government yesterday signed a 61bn/- deal for the purchase of four radars.Under the deal, over 10bn/- which could have been spent if the money was sourced from commercial banks will be saved, according to Works, Transport and Communication Minister Professor Makame Mbarawa.

Speaking at a brief signing ceremony, Professor Mbarawa said the government and TCAA would contribute 55 and 45 per cent, respectively, of the total costs. He said the envisaged four radars would be installed in four airports within an 18-month period.

The minister named the radar beneficiaries as Julius Nyerere International Airport in Dar es Salaam, Songwe Airport in Mbeya, Kilimanjaro International Airport and Mwanza International Airport.

He ordered Thales Air System SS, an engineering firm that has won tender to execute the project, to ensure that the project is complete within the specified time and at high precision.

“I believe TCAA will honestly and patriotically supervise the project implementation... I urge the contractors to work as per contract specifications.If you deliver contrary to specifications, the government will terminate the contract and subject you to fines,” warned the minister. He underscored the importance of purchasing the new radars, arguing that they will strengthen safety and aviation security, increasing revenues through attraction of more airliners in the country’s airspace.

Friday, 25 August 2017

New Mwanza abattoir set to reduce environmental pollution

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By DEUS NGOWI in Moshi

FOUL-SMELLING had been the order of the day for years at Nyakato Industrial Area, about nine kilometres from the shores of Lake Victoria and about eight kilometres from Mwanza City centre along Musoma Road.

The cause of the smell was the presence of the Mwanza city abattoir with its inadequate and outdated facilities and equipment for proper operation. Generally, there was air pollution and a filthy environment. The effect of such pollution was so huge that it did not only end to nearby areas, but also went as far as to Lake Victoria affecting a lot of people. Lake Victoria is the source of River Nile, the lifeline of millions of people in Africa.

To redress the situation, Mwanza City Council thought of a project that would bring an end to the problem of pollution. Due to financial constraints, Mwanza city authorities collaborated with other stakeholders to attain the target – meeting international standards in health and environmental levels.

The council teamed up with the Lake Victoria Environmental Management Project (LVEMP) undertaken by East Africa Community member states of Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi.


Read more.

Wednesday, 16 August 2017

Search, rescue plan in marine transport

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By Daily News Reporter

THE months of May, July, and September arguably arouse bad memories for some people, particularly those who lost their loved ones in marine accidents that claimed more than 2,000 lives in Lake Victoria and in two separate incidents in Zanzibar.

Although there have been several marine accidents, mainly involving small sea vessels including fishing boats, the ‘bad memories’ revolve around huge marine disasters that include MV Bukoba, carrying more than 1,000 passengers and cargo, which overturned and sank in Lake Victoria, half an hour before docking at Mwanza Port on May, 21, 1996.

MV Spice Islander I, a passenger ferry carrying over 2,000 passengers that sank off the coast of Zanzibar on September 10, 2011 was another sea tragedy followed by the sinking of MV Skagit, with more than 290 people aboard and cargo on July 19th 2012.

Every year different events are organised to remember those who died in the accidents, with repeated calls to improve sea transportation, mainly calling for accountability and strengthening of sea transport regulations.


Saturday, 29 July 2017

‘Albinos still live in fear despite decline in attacks’

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By HILDA MHAGAMA

ATTACKS against people with albinism, those living in rural areas continue to live in fear amid presence of root causes that led to violence against them in the past.

The remarks were made yesterday in Dar es Salaam by the UN Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism, Ms Ikonwosa Ero, at the end of her 11-day visit to Tanzania.

“People with albinism continue to live in a very fragile situation as the root causes of the attacks against them remain rampant and the effects of over a decade of violations have taken their toll,” she noted.

Ms Ero said more work must be done to address witchcraft and sensitize community members on the importance of protecting people with albinism instead of harassing, killing or raping them.

She further praised the government for its effort to tackle the issue, which is rooted in the mistaken belief that certain body parts of people living with albinism bring good luck and prosperity. Albinism is a rare genetic condition, which affects the pigment in the eyes, hair and skin.

In the US, about 1 person in 17,000 has albinism. In Africa the prevalence is estimated to range between 1 in 1,100 to 1 in 15,000. But in Tanzania, the rate is much higher - about 1 in every 1,400.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

PCCB nabs 11 TFF election aspirants

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By DAILY NEWS Reporter

PREVENTION and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) is holding Shafi Dauda, one of the aspirants for the posts in Tanzania Football Federation ahead of its general election on August 12.

His arrest and more than ten other regional officers seems to be part of the bureau’s move to ensure the coming election picks clean candidates.

PCCB spokesman Mussa Misalama confirmed yesterday that Dauda, who is vying for the federation’s Executive Committee post, has been arrested and being held at the bureau’s Lake zone headquarters in Mwanza.

“It true that Shafii Dauda, who is among the candidates for the eagerly awaited TFF elections and other ten people have been arrested and are in our custody in Mwanza,”

According to Misalama, Dauda who is also the coordinator of the popular football tournament dubbed as ‘Ndondo Cup’ was arrested yesterday in Mwanza by PCCB officials charged with corruption allegations.

Read more.

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

TRA tightens screws on fuel trade cash system

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By SAULI GILIARD

TANZANIA Revenue Authority (TRA) has said the decision to close fuel stations whose owners didn’t comply with its directives of issuing electronic fiscal device (EFD) receipts, was a last resort after fines imposed on defaulters didn’t yield results.

However, the Director for Taxpayer Services and Education, Mr Richard Kayombo, told ‘Daily News’ in an exclusive interview that the aim wasn’t to punish traders or the public, but to “cultivate a culture” of paying taxes as the country was gearing towards a full electronic economy.
He said the system was supposed to be implemented since 2014 but for the sake of making it workable for all, including one EFD serving four pumps, the system and its operations were rescheduled to September, 2016.

“This is why big firms in the industry have already complied with the system and are comfortable with it,” Mr Kayombo noted, citing Total, Engen, Puma and Gapco, as among the big players who had set the tone.

On why some traders are reluctant to use the fuel specialized electronic devices, he responded: “Some traders are hiding their incomes because they have made under-declarations in order to deny the government the deserved taxes.”

The decision, according to him, had pushed traders to pay for the EFDs while others had pledged that they would use the system. Mr Kayombo exonerated the government from blame, remarking: “The traders are to blame because it was easy for them to evade tax. Some had already installed the machines but were not using them; but after the operation, they have started using them.”




Friday, 14 July 2017

Optimism high as Magu town project advances

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By MOSES MATTHEW in MAGU

MAGU District Council, in collaboration with Landspecs Developers Limited, are undertaking the Kisesa-Isangijo satellite town project, under which informal settlements in Magu district council in Mwanza Region would be eliminated.

Under the flagship project that started in July 3, 2017, over 500 plots in Isangijo village in Kisesa Ward would be allocated. The project has total of 4,000 plots. The Magu district land officer; Mr Damas Mwakindingo, told the ‘Daily News’ over the weekend that the project is located about 20 kilometers from Mwanza City.

“With the project size of 4,000 plots developed for mixed use, it is expected that the project will raise Mwanza’s profile as far as urbanisation and modern town planning is concerned,” Mr Mwakindingo said.

He said the projected satellite town located within Ilendeje, Bukandwe and Busangijo villages, located 500 plots in the past and would locate over that figure. He elaborated that the plots were in surveyed and serviced residential areas and the recipients would be given title deeds.

Read more.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Tour operators told to be more proactive in tourism promotion


From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By MOSES MATTHEW in Mwanza

LAKE Zone based tours operators have been urged to be more proactive in promoting tourism in the area so as to record desirable economic impact as well as creating a vibrant tourism industry.

Speaking during the stakeholders’ meeting attended by about 40 companies here over the weekend, the Swahili International Tourism Expo (SITE) coordinator, Mr Philip Chitaunga, said that local
companies have a major role to play to increase their economic contribution in the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the subsector.

Mwanza has a lot of tourism destinations that are not well promoted and in my view the Tanzania Tourism Board (TTB) need to be more proactive in making sure the tour attractions are known particularly domestic tourism to both local and foreign tourists and then increase the income substantially,” said Mr Chitaunga.

He said that Mwanza Tour operators in the Lake Zone in collaboration with TTB should work entirely in promoting domestic tourism in a bid to improve their economy, the local community and the nation at large.

Read more.

Saturday, 1 July 2017

KOICA lends hand to street children

From Daily News. Dar es Salaam
MOSES MATTHEW in Mwanza

ALL over the world, education provides children and adults with the skills they need to address social issues, break the cycle of poverty, and improve the health and well being of communities.

This can be done through two ways. One is in the Millennium development goals which targeted children to complete a full course of primary schooling by the end of 2015.

The second method uses the term to highlight organizations undertaking education projects to benefit
the community. This includes disease prevention, health education, skills training and social change.

Recently Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) in collaboration with Hands on Science Organisation Tanzania (HSOT), Tanzania Rural Health Movement and Mwanza regional Library is implementing vocational education project to 130 street children in Mwanza City.

The KOICA country’s director, Tanzania Office, Mr Joonsung Park says the objective of the education project is to create ability to street children to sustain themselves. “These vocational skills will last for six months of training, as this class has only 10 months after it was established that more children have developed interest to join the training,” said Mr Park.

Monday, 26 June 2017

Tanzania: Our commitment on L.Victoria Basin is total

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By PIUS RUGONZIBWA in Mwanza

TANZANIA has expressed its commitment to work with other East African Community (EAC) member states to safe guard the Lake Victoria Basin whose prosperity is highly threatened, rapid population being one of the major fact.

Addressing the 18th Sectoral Council of Ministers for the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC) here at the weekend, the Deputy Minister for Works, Transport and Communication, Mr Edwin Ngonyani, said despite Lake Victoria having much economic potential, it is experiencing multiple threats, for whose elimination the country is very keen to contribute.

He mentioned some of them as declining water levels, soil erosion, industrial and municipal waste pollution and over-fishing. These render nature and the well-being of over 40 million people living in the basin at greater risks.

“While we make our commitment in contributing to the well-being of our people in the Basin, we are also stressing the need for having clear policies, laws, and harmonized structures for controlling and limiting further degradation of Lake Victoria,” he said.


Saturday, 24 June 2017

New health scheme targets moms and babies

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By DAILY NEWS Reporter

NUTRITION International, formerly known as the Micronutrient Initiative, is launching a new health scheme for women, adolescent girls and newborn and young children to be known as the ‘Right Start Initiative’ to improve their nutritional status, all covered under a 4.7bn/- (2.8 million Canadian dollars) investment over the next five years to the year 2020.

Supported by the Government of Canada, the programme aims at reducing anaemia, neonatal mortality, as well as the number of low birth weight newborns. It also seeks to reduce stunting in children under five years.

The five-year project will target Mwanza and Simiyu regions and reach over 130,000 pregnant women with WHO recommended iron and folic acid supplementation, more than 90,000 newborns with a package of interventions at birth, 94,000 adolescent girls with weekly iron and folic supplementation and nutrition education and up to 366,000 children under two years old with nutrition services.

This will be the largest programme to be implemented by Nutrition International in Tanzania since the organisation opened its country office in Dar es Salaam in September 2016.


Sunday, 11 June 2017

Govt vows to intensify illegal fishing war

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By PIUS RUGONZIBWA in Mwanza

THE government has said that it will impose tougher measures that might include the introduction of mobile courts and military intervention to eliminate illegal fishing and destruction of Lake Victoria waters and its resources.

Vice-President Samia Suluhu Hassan hinted about the measures on Thursday after she received reports on the alarming acts of illegal fishing.

The vice-president spoke tough against the destruction of the environment of the lake saying:” These acts will not be tolerated any further and my office will institute strict punitive measures against the individuals involved.”

According to VP Samia, fighting illegal fishing and other acts of destruction will become a national agenda instead of leaving the battle against criminals to be waged by the affected regions alone.

“We are witnessing a sharp decrease in revenue from the fishing industry as opposed to the past and that scenario should be dealt with henceforth. The government will provide every support possible in this noble crusade,” stressed the VP.


Thursday, 8 June 2017

East Africa unveils national budgets

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By HENRY LYIMO in Dodoma

IT is budget day for East African region as partner states are set to present their national budget estimates simultaneously today. And, for Tanzania, all roads lead to Dodoma where the government is pencilled to table the national budget estimates for the 2017/18 financial year

The government is expected to increase spending to 32.945tri/- from the current 29.5tri/-, to finance implementation of flagship infrastructural projects aimed at enabling Tanzania to make optimal use of its strategic position as a transport hub in the region.

The 2017/18 budget is aimed at financing the second year of the ambitious Five- Year Development Plan II (2016/17 - 2020/21) which is geared towards heavy investments in infrastructure to transform the nation from an agricultural economy to an industry based economy.

Key development projects with significant multiplier effects to the economy as outlined in the plan include construction of the standard gauge railway (SGR) to link the Dar es Salaam Port with Mwanza on Lake Victoria and Kigoma on Lake Tanganyika, as well as neighbouring Rwanda and Burundi.


Monday, 29 May 2017

Researcher advocates cotton as the major cash crop

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By FATMA ABDU in Buchosa

IN efforts to transform Tanzania into an industrial economy, farmers in Mwanza region’s Buchosa district have been challenged to revive production of cotton as their main cash crop.

Speaking here during the Open Forum for Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB) organised training under Tanzania Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH), Cotton Pathologist from Ukiliguru Research Centre Stella Chiriini said cotton has great potential of boosting the national economy and farmers’ income.

The training that attracted extension officers in the district aims at increasing awareness among agro-extension officers on the importance of using modern technology in production of cassava, potatoes and cotton crops in the district.


EAC to intensify Lake Victoria maritime safety, curb Nile Perch decline

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By DEUS NGOWI in Arusha
THE East African Community (EAC) is moving in to ensure maritime safety, boost environmental conservation as well as tackle illegal fishing as massive decline of Nile Perch has hit Lake Victoria.

A research carried out by Lake Victoria Fisheries Organisation (LVFO) indicated that in 2015, there was a major decline in Nile Perch stocks from 1.2 million tonnes to 0.8 million tonnes while stock of sardines went down to 0.7 million tonnes from 1.3 million tonnes.

That has been revealed by the Chairman of EAC Council of Ministers, Dr Ali Kivenjija in his budget speech to the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) for 2017/18, saying LVFO conducted the survey in order to estimate the amount of fish in the lake and the proportions available for harvesting.

Dr Kivenjija further revealed that the results of the biennial Fishery Frame Surveys, the last conducted last year recorded an increase of illegal nets (monofilaments) by 59 per cent, hence calling for intensive surveillance to curb illegalities.


Sunday, 28 May 2017

Why stigma? Fistula can be treated

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By MAUREEN ODUNGA

IT WAS all smiles as Sikujua Mabula (19) from Mwanza Region went through successful obstetric fistula surgery when aged 17 years which had posed threat to her normal labour delivery.

“For seven consecutive days, I experienced labour pangs, but still could not give birth. On the eighth day, I delivered a stillborn baby whose only head managed to come out,” she pointed out while evading eye contacts.

Mabula hinted that the pregnancy forced her to get married to the man who had impregnated her despite not being prepared to tie a knot with him.

“A few months after the marriage, my husband advised me to return to my parents because life was becoming uncompromising and return when things becomes normal. “Back home, I used to attend clinic where doctors told me that the baby was big and I would only give birth through caesarean surgery.

A few months to my delivery time, my mother-in-law advised me to return so that they would give me company,” she further narrated.





Thursday, 25 May 2017

Preps for Lake Victoria vessel tender in high gear

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By Daily News reporter

TENDERS for the purchase of a new passenger vessel to ply between the Lake Victoria ports of Mwanza and Bukoba will be opened next month, as the old vessels are in different stages of massive rehabilitation.

The Acting General Manager of Marine Services Company Ltd (MSCL), Mr Benedict Hamisi, said yesterday that the opening of the tenders will signal a preamble to the assembling of a brand new and specialized vessel that will improve maritime transportation in Africa’s biggest lake.

“We will open the tenders on 12th June, as one of the decisive steps towards implementing a pledge made by then candidate John Magufuli, during the 2015 General Election campaign,” he said.

He recalled that, as candidate on a Chama Cha Mapinduzi ticket, Dr Magufuli had pledged that, if he were to emerge victorious and become Head of State, he would be instrumental in facilitating the purchase of a new vessel with a capacity of 1,200 passengers.

According to Mr Hamisi, apart from the envisaged purchase of a new vessel, the government had also invested heavily in the rehabilitation of Mv Victoria, Mv Butiama and Mv Liemba, to improve services in Lakes Victoria and Tanganyika.

Read full story.



Ebola advisory: No handshakes, please, you’re in Mwanza

From Daily News, Dar es Salaam
By PIUS RUGONZIBWA in Mwanza

AN alert on the deadly Ebola disease is sweeping across Mwanza Region as residents here are cautioned to check the movements of visitors from the DR Congo.

The ‘advisory’ now making the rounds was issued Mwanza Regional Commissioner (RC) John Mongela yesterday during a stakeholders meeting called strategically to brainstorm and chart out measures the region could in case of an outbreak.

The City of Mwanza and its environs receives many visitors from across the Great Lakes Region, with at least 100 fish traders alone coming into Mwanza every day – invariably all of them from the DRC where four people are reported to have died from Ebola and 37 others infected lately.

Mr Mongela says even though his officials were yet to report any Ebola cases or suspect, the authorities had “reason to start taking precautionary measures due to its proximity with DRC.”

Our region is not spared when it comes to threats of Ebola due to a number of factors … such as migrations of people from our neighbours in the DRC being the main factor.

Read full text