Tanzania: President's Dividend Ultimatum Yields Whopping 25bn/-

A TWO-MONTH ultimatum issued by President John Magufuli to Public Entities to pay dividend to the government has churned out a whopping 25.12bn/-, Finance and Planning Minister, Dr Philip Mpango confirmed here on Thursday.

Exactly two months ago, Dr Magufuli ordered the Ministry of Finance and Planning to ensure that 187 public agencies remitted dividends to the government in 60 days or risk their Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) and their Board Chairpersons get sacked.

As the ultimatum elapsed yesterday, Dr Mpango appeared before the media to issue his report on the implementation of the directive, where he expressed his satisfaction, saying 25bn/- was a huge amount that would help the country to offer social services to the people.

According to Treasury Registrar (TR), Mr Athuman Mbuttuka, out of 187 entities, only four could not manage to implement the directive, noting two of them were not operational. They are Tanzania Pharmaceutical Limited and Datel Tanzania Limited.

Other entities which could not beat the deadline according to Dr Mpango were Teachers Registration Board, that is still without board or management, as well as Abood Seed Oil Industries Limited/Abood Soap which has been recaptured by the central government after an investor failed to honour the requirements of the contract.

Dr Mpango spoke immediately after receiving dividends from six entities at Dodoma's Treasury Square.

They are Usafiri Dar es Salaam-UDA (100m/-) , Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology-(100m/-), Tanzania Development Finance Limited-TDFL (300m/-), Mwananchi Engineering and Construction Company- MECCO (300m/), Mbeya Cement (300m/-) and Williamson Diamond Limited (572.1m/-).

However, the minister asked CEOs and board chairpersons of the entities in which the government has stake to be proactive in providing dividend instead of waiting for a directive from the Head of State.

The CEOs and Board Chairpersons had until January 23, 00:00am to honour the directive or else leave their offices according to a directive by Dr Magufuli who instructed the finance minister to send them packing should they fail to comply.

Vividly upset by their poor financial performance, President Magufuli threatened to shut down all public parastatals, agencies and other institutions that would defy his order.

He noted that the government spent 59.6trn/- investment capital in the companies and was expecting nothing but returns from the investment.

He spoke shortly after receiving dividend from 79 government institutions, authorities and agencies worth over 1.05trn/- where he announced that the government had invested at least 59.6trn/- into 266 institutions.

"Unfortunately only 79 institutions are returning the favour," he said, adding: "the time to plead with each other is over and we cannot tolerate seeing the government continue to lose."

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