COMMITTEE DISSATISFIED WITH MINERAL CENTRE

THE Minerals and Energy Committee has expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of a building that houses Dodoma Mineral Marketing Centre.

Having expressed its dismay at the quality of the structure, the committee directed the Ministry of Minerals and Energy to search for an appropriate and secure building for the business.

Speaking after inspecting the building, Committee Chairman Dustan Kitandula said the current building, which accommodates the regional mineral centre, did not qualify to accommodate mineral auctioning activities.

“The building that accommodates the regional mineral centre brings shame to us and to the region itself, considering the fact that Dodoma is the country’s capital city. The mineral auctioning centre does not match with the status and profile of Dodoma,” he insisted.

He added: “The establishment of the mineral auctioning centres across the country was left in the hands of regional authorities as the central government did not give specific funds for their establishment. Other regions performed well, but Dodoma has proved failure and it is shameful.”

He said though mineral business in Dodoma was not active, it was unacceptable to leave things be the way they were given the status of the region.

Mr Kitandula suggested that another suitable area be searched where the centre could be set up.

At the same time, Mr Kitandula asked the Ministry of Minerals and Energy to submit recommendations to the committee on how to address complaints raised by investors in the mining sector.

According to Mr Kitandula, investors complain about red-tape, high charges and unfriendly and cumbersome procedures to be followed in exporting products from gemstones.

“Given the fact that such complaints have been repetitive there is a pressing need for us to address them so that we resolve them once and for all,” he insisted.

Earlier, Bukoba Urban MP Wilfred Lwakatare asked the regional authorities to come up with explicit measures to ensure Dodoma Mineral Centre was given the status it deserved.

Geita Rural MP Joseph Msukuma made it clear that though Dodoma had no largescale mining activities the site chosen to set up the mineral auctioning centre had no status to match with the profile of the region.

“You can’t keep gold in a dirty environment. Billionaires will be coming here only to find these plastic chairs. Let’s create an attractive environment, including ensuring safety,” he stressed.

Minister for Minerals Dotto Biteko said the ministry would look into all directives and advice given by the committee.

Acting regional mineral officer, Mr Laurent Bujashi, said six months before the establishment of the mineral centre they had collected 118.4m/-which was an average of 23.6m/-per month.

He said after the establishment of the centre in May last year revenue collection rose to 486.8 in six months, an average of 54.1m/-per month.

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