9 February 2018

Tanzania: State - We Won't Replace Tanzanite Ores System Now

THE government yesterday stressed that it would not stop the system of passing Tanzanite ores through the strong room upon mining them first.

The firm statement came up in the Parliament following claims that the procedure was making the owners of the mines to delay in paying their workers.

"Getting the Tanzanite ores into the strong room provides guarantee over the quantity of the mined ores, because these precious stones are carried away without proper record and denies the government its due revenues," said the Deputy Minister for Minerals, Mr Dotto Biteko.

He therefore told the National Assembly that the government will not consider replacing the exercise, and instead appealed to the legislatures to support the initiative. He was responding to the Special Seats MP, Anna Gidarya (CHADEMA) who claimed that in Mererani Tanzanite mine in Simanjiro District, the owners of the companies have been delaying payments of their workers at the expenses of the procedure to pass the precious stones first in the strong rooms.

In another question, Ms Gidaya wanted to know measures that the government has taken to establish the source of the killings in Mirerani mine, and whether there were plans to make the owners of the companies to compensate their victims. Mr Biteko pointed out that several accidents occurring at the mine have been as a result of miners not adhering to safety precautions when carrying out their activities.

That was after the government has been inspecting the mining sites and educating their owners on security and safety matters. On compensations, he said, since the government has introduced the Workers Compensation Fund (WCF), the ministry would now encourage the companies owners to join the Fund in order to compensate their working staff upon occurrences of calamities.

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