19 January 2018

Tanzania: Prime Minister Vows to Resolve Mine-Villagers' Row

PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa yesterday pledged that he would find a lasting solution to the perennial conflicts between North Mara Gold Mine and communities in the vicinity as soon as possible.

Mr Majaliwa cited compensation as one of the issues that needed to be addressed, in order to create a harmonious relationship between the two groups, noting that several teams that the government had formed to address thorny issues that included complaints by people demanding compensation from the mine had not yielded positive results.

"The big issue here is compensation. I want to deal with it myself," the premier said on Thursday during a public rally attended by several people from different walks of life living in the villages located near the mine as part of his ongoing working tour in Mara Region.

Mr Majaliwa asked a team comprising five representatives from the villages to meet him in Dodoma on January 28 this year, to seek lasting solutions to the problems, stressing that, since the government was a keen proponent of the win-win situation, the government was keen to neutralise conflicts between wananchi and investors.

"This government cannot tolerate a situation in which wananchi and investors are perennially quarrelling. I know that many teams that have been formed to resolve the deadlock, some of whose mission lasted two months, haven't made a breakthrough.

I have decided to take charge myself, to ensure that a definitive solution is found," Mr Majaliwa told the audience. The premier stressed that, whatever moves would be made should act within the legal framework. Earlier, he visited and inspected a modern health centre that had been built with the support of North Mara Gold Mine at Nyamwaga village.

He was impressed with the work and congratulated the mine for complimenting the government's efforts to improve health service delivery in the area, remarking: " I am very impressed. This health centre is of a high enough standard to serve as a district hospital. Congratulations to the management of the mine."

The Mara Regional Commissioner (RC) Mr Adam Malima said the facility would be opened late next month

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