Arusha — The multi-billion shilling investment project here which stalled for years over land space is now set for a take off.
The title deed for a plot where the 16-storey headquarter building for the Pan African Postal Union (Papu) will be built was finally handed over to the organisation yesterday.
"This project will now be realised after sorting out the title deed issue. The title deed has been issued today," said the minister for Works, Communications and Transport Isack Kamwele.
He told reporters after visiting the site that failure by the pan African agency to get the title deed has delayed implementation of the project for nearly a decade.
"This issue has now been sorted out," he said, noting that Papu and the Arusha city fathers will still have to work on a clear boundary of the project site and the nearby Golf grounds. The minister said issuance of the title deed for the stalled project was a clear indication of the government's position that the permanent headquarters of the organisation remain in Arusha. The Papu headquarter building is a joint venture between the African postal body and the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA).
Three years ago the cost of the project was estimated at $ 20m, but the organisation's officials declined to discuss the matter yesterday on grounds that the figure must have changed. "We have some funds, but the project is now being evaluated afresh. After that we can have a rough idea on the cost," said Kolawole Aduloju, Papu assistant secretary general. He affirmed to the The Citizen that the investment house project will be undertaken jointly with TCRA. "Funds generated will help sustain the organization, among others," he said. The building will be constructed at a plot where Papu has its current head offices at Phillips area near Mt Meru Hotel along the Arusha-Moshi road. He added that the proposed structure would have conference facilities, serving the continental body revenues spent on hiring halls whenever it hosts meetings.
Papu was established as a specialized agency of the then Organization of African Union -the precursor to the African Union - in January 1980 after a postal conference held in Arusha. It is one of several regional and international organisations with permanent headquarters in Arusha.