Sunday, 28 May 2017

Graves, Magufuli, mineral sands and Muhongo

            When President John Magufuli’s told to revisit scandal-laden former regimes, he said he’d not exhume graves for the fear of not being able to re-cover them.  It’s as if Abyssus aabyssus invocat or deep calls to deep; or hell calls to hell while, in reality, noises were for the love of the nation. Again, when Magufuli axed the former Energy and Mineral Minister, Prof Sospeter Muhongo, I wasn't shocked. If I may say but one thing, I saw it coming the day Magufuli ordered the formation of the squad to probe gold and copper remnants in mineral sands. Naturally, whenever the person that entrusted power in you forms a taskforce to look into your actions, take note. You’re done. What’s essentially left when such a thing occurs is when, but not, if you’ll face the music.
            Muhongo’s fate’s sealed when the taskforce exhumed a lot of rot in mineral business whereby since 1998 Tanzania’s been allowing its mineral sands to be exported without being thoroughly checked; thus, acting as a conduit of concealing the actual amount of minerals mined and exported.
            Again, an Igbo proverb has it that a man who doesn’t know where the rain began to beat him cannot say where he dried his body. Muhongo, too, didn’t know when it started raining on his parade. Had he known, he wouldn’t be caught pants down. None the less, Magufuli’s warned that Muhongo’s a boil after being implicated in a multibillion scam famously known as Escrow. It’s alleged that Muhongo was one of the recipients of Tshs. Billions from the architect of the scam, James Rugemalira. As a Swahili proverb says, love is always blind. Being a friend, Magufuli decided to ignore all noises the media and activists made. He, thus, went on appointing Muhongo to such a very important ministry without knowing that he who scoops honey doesn’t do it once.
             Now that Muhongo’s dirty linens are in the agora for everybody to see, what next as far as Muhongo is concerned? For, his role in sabotaging the country–this is according the report released by the taskforce Magufuli formed–is highly noticeable and unconcealable to say the least. Who wants to hide an elephant in the sitting room?
            Now, the prima facie verdict is out. What’ll the government do about Muhongo and the whole coterie of saboteurs that used their positions to ruin the country? I remember. Magufuli once said that he’s afraid of exhuming graves for the fear of failing to cover them thereafter. Those who don’t know what graves means, they’re just blunders and criminality Magufuli’s predecessors committed when in power. Even this simmering scandal’s its root from two previous regimes. Thus, it’s more of a grave in this context than a mere scandal. Will it be stymied or much must be expected?
Source: Citizen Sunday today.
            There are many important questions behind these revelations. First, for how long Tanzania’s been robbed pointlessly simply because some of its officials decided to collude with foreign carpetbaggers who come as investors while they actually are but robbers? How much money’s the country lost?  Which foreign companies or countries are involved in this sabotage?
            To make matters worse, the taskforce discovered that even the scanners used at the Dar es Salaam Harbour are flawed. This means, Tanzania hasn’t only been losing in minerals but also in other resources such as Rhino horns, elephant trophies and others. Again, who purchased these gadgets, from which countries, for how much; and for how long have they been operating? If this is the case, can Tanzania stop becoming a good entry point for drugs?  For, if you look at such an anomaly deeply, you find that there are so many things that have been going on that the general public; and government doesn’t know. Further, this speaks to the fact that there’s a syndicate behind this sabotage.
            When it comes to the exhumation of graves, many’d think that given that the graves are now opening themselves, the president should change his stance on them.  So, too, there’s no way he can turn a blind eye on them provided that everything is now open and clear.
            Will Magufuli stick to his guns while his country is robbed wantonly? Ironically, if you look at the trend of Tanzania, much time’s spent by two former presidents, Benjamin Mkapa and Jakaya Kikwete travelling abroad in their begging missions while their governments were blindly allowing a few crosiers to rob the country. What’s been unearthed in Tanzania is but a typical replica of what’s been going on almost in all African countries with minerals and other resources. This has to stop now. This is why Africa’s poor not simply because it was created poor. It is because of having leaders devoid of probity and patriotism, simple.
            Again, if Muhongo has been shown the door, even Bashite will one day.
Source: The Citizen Sunday today.

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