Currently, I hear jubilations everywhere as the Tanzanians sing praise of their political newbie hero, President John Pombe Magufuli; for pluckily hoofing it where most of his predecessors feared to. This is because the hoi polloi were betrayed and demoralised for many years, since Mwl Julius Nyerere’s abdication. This said; it isn’t hard to gauge how graft had dangly secured conviviality with the politicos so as to become a furtive policy before Magufuli’s arrival. After striking two individuals Havinder Sethi Singh and James Rugemalira–whose cases we can’t discuss; because they’re before the court–hoi polloi seem to be enchanted. Essentially, these vandals along with public venal officials, are the architects, or call them the black boxes if not a cockpit of the ever-lossmaking investment, the Independent Power Tanzania Limited (IPTL) by which the national lost about US$200 million pointlessly. Taking on such stinking graft is no mean feat; though we need to courageously turn more big stones.
Demonstrably, the IPTL isn’t a grave but a graveyard. Thus, this is the beginning in that Escrow shouldn’t undercut the doggedness to attach IPTL. Instead, it must undergird the interests of the citizenry but not a select few.
In dealing with this imp, there are so many unknown things that need to be known. For example, how do you deal with Escrow scam without dealing with its mother, the IPTL, which enabled hoaxers to rob our nation? My source confided me; Singh and Rugemalira jointly own just 50% shares of the IPTL; and the rest is owned by a mysterious creature[s], Simba Trust. Who is [are] Simba Trust that’s never been divulged since the scam came to the fore? We need to know them.
I heard that the government attached the chattels the accused and suspects that are still at large own. Does this include Tageta IPTL plant that’s, apart from polluting our country, been used in milking the Tanzania National Electric Company (TANESCO) day in and day out; not to mention causing power hike for unsuspecting and always sheepish consumers? Again, arresting the culprits is an easy part of the mêlée against graft committed with impunity. Are we legally prepared to prosecute all players in this leech without knowing them all? What are suspects that are still in public offices or position such as members of parliament waiting for?
According to an out-front anti-graft crusader and researcher who did a lot about exposing the scam, the “IPTL begat Escrow” and the two are one like yin and yang. Further, he maintains that the IPTL profligacy didn’t only caused the losses of millions of dollars but billions; if we consider the its negative effects on the economy and individuals who picked up the tab. He bases his assertion to the fact that when our venal biggies, harranguedly, ‘blessed’ the IPTL for their personal ends, Tanzania lost many international financial grants among which is USD473m US Millennium Challenge Account grant that would have financed new power projects in the country.
A little bird confided me that the IPTL has dented private power plants (IPPs) (which are cost effective) due to its ravenousness and duplicity. Sadly though, not all Tanzanians know that the cheapest IPP in Tanzania, Songas, for 13 years, has been selling power to TANESCO for less than 6 US cents per kilowatt-hour, while TANESCO hikes it to its customers for about 12 US cents. According to a 2013 report by the President's Delivery Bureau, IPTL’s power cost TANESCO 24 US cents while Symbion’s and Aggreko’s emergency power projects cost up to 42 US cents despite the fact that the Government, through TANESCO, TPDC and TDFL, owns over 40% of Songas’s shares apart from receiving dividends from Songas in addition to the relatively low-cost power. Aren’t these deadly, lossmaking and toxic investments?
To cut a long story short, if indeed, Tanzania is deadly serious and it aims at doing away with such shoddy and toxic investments, must see to it that the IPPs are supported even by using the monies it has been burning on criminal investments such as the IPTL, Symbion aka Dowans aka Richmond former venal regime ushered in to restively ruin our economy.
Source: Citizen Wed., today.