21 April 2013

Tanzania: Sharing of Natural Resources of Union to Be Debated Upon

Zanzibar — Executives from the Isles and Tanzania Mainland are expected to meet next week to debate on the sharing of natural resources, the House of Representatives was informed.

Zanzibar's Second Vice- President, Ambassador Seif Ali Iddi told legislators that members of the committee tasked to debate on the issue are scheduled to meet next Sunday and the agenda includes the sensitive issue of oil and gas.

"We have a team headed by Attorney Generals from Zanzibar and Tanzania mainland who are working on how to resolve the issue of amicably sharing natural resources," he said. The committee charged with the responsibility of discussing Union matters under dispute will meet on April 28.

The Ambassador's statement follows heated debates by the members of the Zanzibar House for the instant removal of sharing natural resources like oil and gas from Union matters, accusing authorities on the Mainland for unfair distribution of the natural wealth.

Legislators such as Mr Makame Mshimba Mbarouk (CCM- Kitope), Mr Ismail Jussa Landu (CUF- Mjimkongwe), and Hamza Hassan Juma (CCM- Kwamtipura) have on several occasions complained that since the formation of the Union in 1964, the Isles have never benefited from the natural wealth. Under the current constitution, natural resources including gold, diamond, copper, oil, and gas are regarded as Union matters.

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