Tanzania: Govt Ups Anti-Corruption Fight

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THE government will amend the Prevention and Combatting of Corruption Act and whistle blowers legislation to cement its endeavour to root out corruption in the country.

This was revealed by the Prevention and Combatting of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) Director General, Mr Valentino Mlowola, during a sensitisation seminar for APNEC MPs.

Mr Mlowola said the two legislations were under review in order to suit the current environment and enable the public offer their support in the fight against corruption without jeopardising their security.

The reviewing of the laws also envisages at empowering PCCB with more extensive powers to investigate cases of corruption, he said.

The Bureau said the ongoing crusade against corruption has yielded notable achievements with 15 high profile corruption cases sent to court this year.

“We have saved money and assets to the tune of 53.9bn/- and 443 new cases have been filed with the courts; among these 195 cases are section 15 of PCCA (Prevention and Combatting of Corruption Act) cases.”

He said that during the past year, the corruption bureau watchdog received 7,303 cases, with 788 investigations, about 10.7 per cent, having been completed.

Presenting his budget estimates last Thursday, Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa told the Parliament that the country was making progress in the anti-corruption crusade as per Transparency International Corruption Perception Survey of 2016.

According to the survey, Tanzania is ranked 116th out of 182 countries around the globe.

The Bureau said the ongoing crusade against corruption has yielded notable achievements with 15 high profile corruption cases sent to court this year.

“We have saved money and assets to the tune of 53.9bn/- and 443 new cases have been filed with the courts; among these 195 cases are section 15 of PCCA (Prevention and Combatting of Corruption Act) cases.”

He said that during the past year, the corruption bureau watchdog received 7,303 cases, with 788 investigations, about 10.7 per cent, having been completed.

PCCB chief, Mr Mlowola praised President John Magufuli’s government for its resolve in the fight against corruption, saying actions taken by the government have sent a clear message to members of the public and government officials.

“Public officials have realised that, the business is no longer as usual, there are consequences if they indulge in corrupt practices,” asserted Mr Mlowola.

The Bureau chief noted that government crackdown on corruption has renewed confidence among people and they are now collaborating well by giving vital information relating to corruption.

“Members of public have been encouraged by the President’s zeal and have been providing necessary information that has enabled the government to discover massive tax evasions and other maladministration.”

“The new government continues to fight corruption with increased vigour.

It is our belief that, by fighting corruption effectively, the quality of lives of our citizens will be highly improved and poverty will be gradually eradicated.”

He said among the fundamental legislative actions taken to combat corruption was the establishment of a Special Anti- Corruption Division in the High Court, revealing that regulations to control court proceedings were in operation.

In a bid to curb corruption and squandering of public funds, PCCB has established a tracking system that monitors the use of public funds in development projects.

“Role of PETS coordinators is to monitor and inform the Headquarters about faults in development projects,” he explained, noting that reports by PETS coordinators at district level opened doors for investigations.

He urged MPs and councillors in district councils where development projects are implemented, to cooperate with PCCB for the benefit of the general public.

Mr Mlowola said the lawmakers needed to understand the dynamics and effects of corruption in the stability of the country, warning that the vice was a threat to their political survival as well.

He charged that the legislators have a great role to play in the war against corruption, including allocation of adequate resources and enactment of laws that will curb corruption in the country.

Despite improved efforts by the PCCB, the organ still faces a myriad of challenges in its crusade to alleviate corruption.

The PCCB boss mentioned some of the challenges facing the anti-corruption efforts as weak structures in the government which encourages corruption and the culture of glorifying corruption among citizens.

Other challenges according to Mr Mlowola include resistance from powerful corrupt syndicates, involvement of multilateral corporations in corruption, weak criminal justice system as well as lack of capacity in investigation of complex financial crimes.

The seminar was graced by Speaker of the National Assembly, Job Ndugai, who said the war against corruption inclusive and continuous battle and more efforts were needed to fight the ‘cancer’ in order to alleviate poverty and attain the dream of making Tanzania an industrial economy by 2025.

©Daily News

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