27 January 2013

Tanzania: Nicol Shareholders Endorse Dismissal of Former Board Chair

DELEGATES to the Annual General Meeting of the Tanzania's National Investment Company Limited (NICOL) have unanimously endorsed dismissal of the company's former Board Chairman, Mr Felix Mosha, saying that the company recorded a 9.8bn/- loss between 2007 and 2009 under his leadership.

The shareholders also issued a seven-day ultimatum for the former NICOL leadership to hand over the office and make company's financial records accessible to the interim leadership under Board Chairman Gideon Kaunda, otherwise he would be evicted from the office forcibly.

Before reading the resolutions in Dar es Salaam yesterday, the Interim NICOL Manager, Mr Kinon Adam Wamza, showed a letter from Business Registration and Licensing Authority (BRELA) indicating that the interim leadership installed in April 14, 2012 was mandated to undertake all NICOL operations yet the former leadership had refused to hand over and vacate the office. Part of the resolutions reads:

"The interim leadership should act decisively to inform agencies or organizations to avoid signing any business agreement with former NICOL leadership Mr Felix Mosha and CEO Ms Katherine Armstrong. These have been removed from office and are no longer recognized by shareholders."

Another point in the resolution instructs the former chairman to withdraw all cases he filed in courts and hand over the affairs of the company to the interim manager. Explaining the basis of the refusal by the former leadership to hand over the company, the Interim Manager, Mr Wamza, said it was based on their misinterpretation of the Commercial Court ruling that endorsed shareholders' powers for the management of the company.

There has never been a stay of execution for the court order. Judge Mark Bomani who is among the pioneers of NICOL, advised the interim leadership to study the current situation for an effective resuscitation of the company which should be on the hands of the newly entrusted interim leadership.

"I would like to tell our friend Felix Mosha that ten years as chairman are more than enough and he should step down in dignity to allow fresh ideas for the company to move forward," said Judge Bomani. The IPP Executive Chairman, Mr Reginald Mengi, said the current state of affairs was disappointing and hurting shareholders all over the country, as some sacrificed the little they had to build up the indigenous company.

Another pioneer of NICOL, Mr Arnold Kilewo, said the allegations about forgery of court documents could not be substantiated and the decision by shareholders was binding. "The interim leadership should be assisted and given a chance to come up with a comprehensive and viable investment plan," Kilewo suggested.

Another shareholder, Daudi Msangi, said it was improper for someone to cling to the office while the shareholders have demanded his resignation. The company's shareholders formed a team of elders to meet Mr Mosha and advise him on the way forward.

Asked to comment on the stakeholders' meeting, NICOL's former Board Chairman, Mr Felix Mosha briefly said he was not in a position to say much. "I am waiting to learn more about the details of the meeting. Once I have a copy of the presentations I will be more than willing to comment," Mr Mosha said.

On the decision by the stakeholders to appoint a team of five elders to consult with him, Mr Mosha said he fully supported the idea and was hopeful the discussion would be fruitful.

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