Tanzania Daily News (Dar es Salaam)

23 January 2013

Tanzania: Mtwara Elders Speak Out On Gas Pipeline Row

Photo: Capital FM
A natural gas plant: Mtwara residents in Tanzania are protesting the governments plans to pump natural gas to Dar es Salaam through their town.

ELDERS from Mtwara Region have called on the politicians to stop involving themselves in the gas dispute for the matter of seeking publicity, but instead partner with the wananchi at the area to generate development.

The leaders issued the caution in Dar es Salaam, during a press conference based on the plans to transport the natural gas from Mtwara to Dar es Salaam.

"We call upon the politicians seeking publicity over the gas dispute to stop immediately and if they were to help us, then they should partner with us to improve our development," said Mr Seleman Mademu, the Secretary of Mtwara leaders.

Meanwhile, the leaders have insisted on the need for the government to set up the natural gas plant in Mtwara Region, to improve the economic development at the area. "We need the government to set up the plant in Mtwara Region and not otherwise.

The gas discovered in our region should be processed and transported from our region and not otherwise," he said, adding that the Mtwara people will stage up continuous peaceful demonstration to pressurize the government to institute the plant in that region.

Mr Mademu said that the plant should be set there to improve Mtwara port that would be used to transport products to various places including neighbouring countries, such as Mozambique. "Our region has a well established and deep port that should be used to transport the gas... and we do not see the reason for not setting up the power plant in Mtwara", he noted.

Mr Mademu has also called upon the government to fulfil the promises of constructing various industries in Mtwara, to enable the region improve economic activities that could create employment opportunities.

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