Dodoma — LAWMAKERS demanded for a succession plan for Tanzanians to take over posts of foreigners who are currently dominating the gas subsector. Debating reports submitted by Parliamentary Committees on Infrastructure and that of Energy and Minerals, Sumve lawmaker (CCM), Richards Ndassa said Tanzanians should acquire skills in natural gas infrastructure.
"Tanzanians should undertake on the job training so that they can takeover when foreign employees eventually leave," Mr Ndassa said, adding that while it's good that the nation's interests are guarded by the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC), it is essential that Tanzanians acquire the necessary skills. Special Seats legislator (Chadema), Naomi Kaihura said having too many foreigners working in the gas pipeline projects deny Tanzanians jobs. "It is important that our people are given priority in employment in the pipeline projects," Ms Kaihura argued.
She supported Energy and Minerals Minister, Prof Sospeter Muhongo's gas blocks allocation decision, saying anyone with financial means should be allowed to invest in the subsector without discrimination.
Donge legislator (CUF) Yusufu Suleiman Yusufu denounced people who attack Prof Muhongo for not favouring locals in the allocation of gas exploration blocks. "Let's not allow any middleman in this sector, TPDC is capable of protecting the interests of the nation," argued Yusufu.
Presenting the Energy and Minerals Committee report, its Chairman, Victor Mwambalaswa (CCM Lupa), commended government for promising to give priority to companies incorporating Tanzanians as shareholders in gas blocks allocation.
Mr Mwambalaswa pointed out that mistakes done in allocation of mining blocks with many being hoarded by locals who have no muscle to invest in the capital intensive sector, should not be repeated.
"The committee commends government for assuring us that blocks will be allocated to competent companies both local and foreign," Mwambalaswa noted.
The fourth round of natural gas blocks allocation was kick-started in Dar es Salaam last October and is due for completion next March when seven blocks will be allocated to investors.