PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa has ordered all tenants owing the National Housing Corporation (NHC) to settle their debts by the end of May.
The Prime Minister issued the order yesterday in Dar es Salaam during a meeting with the NHC management and members of the board of directors he held at his office in Dar es Salaam.
Prime Minister Majaliwa ordered the NHC management and the board to write letters to all the indebted institutions, companies and individuals to serve as a notice to order them to settle the debts by May 30.
"The list of indebted firms and individuals is long. Very unfortunately it appears some of them have vacated the without fully paying their debts. All these individuals must be sought and settle the payments," he said.
The premier said all government institutions that owe the corporation must pay the rental fees as they have their budgets.
"If they built their offices and relocated to their new buildings they should have first paid before relocation," he stressed. "We are heading towards the end of the 2019/20 financial year.
Write them letters so that they pay their debts by May 30. Give me the list of government institutions that owe you so that I can make follow-ups.
I will summon every permanent secretary under whom the indebted institutions fall for questioning," the prime minister explained.
According to the PM, the corporation is owed by several public institutions rental fees amounting to 4.3 bn/-, saying if all institutions paid the debt the corporation could have funds to finance its low-cost house programme.
Meanwhile, the prime minister directed the corporation to focus on building low cost houses, insisting that the demand was still very high.
"I want the corporation to throw its weight behind this programme. Supervise your technocrats to ensure they don't inflate the costs of the projects to the extent that ordinary people can't afford to buy houses built under this programme," he pointed out.
He called upon the corporation to strengthen and modernise its rental fee collection system by ensuring that the collection is done electronically with a special control number.
NHC board chairperson Dr Sophia Kongole said the majority of tenants who owed the corporation were public institutions and departments all of which had relocated to other places, including Dodoma.
According to Dr Kongole, NHC is still claiming 4.35 bn/- from tenants who vacated while those who are still using its facilities owe it 1.28bn/-.
She said the corporation was searching for funds to finance some mega projects, including Morocco Square, Seven Eleven (Kawe), Golden Premier Residence (Kawe) and Regent Estate, all of which stalled due to lack of funds.