THE laying of the foundation stone for the historic mega oil pipeline project from Hoima in Uganda to Tanga in Tanzania, yesterday, ushered in a new economic era not only for the two countries, but the East African region as a whole.
The historic event saw Chongoleani village being flooded with multitude of people from all walks of life to witness the life changing event.
The launch that facilitates the kick-start of the construction of the project bring in a new economic dispensation as many Tanzanians, especially those in the areas the pipeline passes will stand to benefit in one way or the other.
It is on record that the pipeline will pass through eight regions in the country and Chongoleani village will host the regional centre for exporting oil that will be constructed on 500 acres of land, opening up more opportunities for residents and changing their lives for the better. Recently, local businessmen came out declaring that they were cable and ready to grab the opportunities to be availed by the pipeline.
The co-founder of Association of Tanzania Oil and Gas Service Providers, Mr Abdulsamad Abdulrahim, was quoted as saying that indigenous Tanzanian individuals and corporate bodies have what it takes to deliver services for the construction of the pipeline.
This is a good news but they should put what they say into practice and make sure that they go out and grab the opportunities without waiting for foreign firms to do so.
Uganda and Tanzania are jointly constructing a 1,445 kilometre world's longest heated pipeline from Hoima oilfields in Uganda to Tanga Port of the Indian Ocean at an estimated cost of 8tri/- (3.35 billion US dollars) to pump oil discovered in Uganda to the international markets.
About 80 per cent of the construction of the pipeline will be conducted in Tanzania, as it will be passing through the following regions - Kagera, Geita, Shinyanga, Tabora, Dodoma, Manyara and Tanga. The two governments of Uganda and Tanzania have done their part by providing opportunities to citizens in their respective countries.
It is now up to 'wananchi' to come out and grab the opportunities. It is high time that ordinary citizens benefit through grabbing opportunities to be provided by the project.
They should also treat the project as theirs and desist from sabotage or anything retrogressive.