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Govt may go to court in radar cash dispute

Discussion in 'International Forum' started by JOHN MADIBA, Jul 7, 2011.


    JOHN MADIBA JF-Expert Member

    Jul 7, 2011
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    Dodoma. Parliament has advised the government to sue BAE Systems if the British company fails to pay Sh73.8 billion reparations as ordered by a UK court last year.The recommendations are contained in the report handed over to National Assembly Speaker Anna Makinda by special parliamentary team in Dodoma yesterday. The team, headed by Deputy Speaker Job Ndugai, travelled to Britain last month to present the government’s stand that the money should be paid directly to it instead of through charity organisations as preferred by BAE Systems.

    Mr Ndugai told reporters shortly before handing the report over that they had also advised the government to pursue legal measures against all people implicated in BAE System’s fraudulent sale of radar to Tanzania.
    Former Attorney General Andrew Chenge, who resigned from the Cabinet in 2008 over the scandal, is among Tanzanians named in the scandal.

    However, the Minister of State in the President office responsible for Good Governance, Mr Mathias Chikawe, ruled out possibility of prosecuting Mr Chenge on the grounds that he was cleared by Britain’s Serious Fraud Office, which investigated the matter.Mr Chikawe said the investigations only implicated Mr Sailesh Vithlan, who was the broker in the deal, and two BAE Systems officials.

    Mr Ndugai said legal proceedings should be instituted against the culprits in Tanzania and elsewhere as they were all responsible for the loss of billions of shillings of taxpayers’ money.The Kongwa MP said the committee also asked Southwalk Crown Court, which ruled that the money should be refunded to the “Tanzania people”, to demand the payment from BAE Systems and deposit it in a special account until it is determined how the funds would be repaid to Tanzania.

    Mr Ndugai added that they had established that the settlement between BAE Systems and SFO was reached out of court, and that it had been crafted by the firm’s lawyers.“The agreement was endorsed by the Southwalk Crown Court with the judge ordering BAE Systems to pay a £500,000 fine and £ 29.5 million to the Tanzanian people.”

    Mr Ndugai said he settlement document indicated that no legal action would be taken against BAE Systems after admitting to the minor charge of failing to keep its accounts properly.The delegation voiced their opposition to the agreement in their various meetings with UK officials since the Tanzania government, which paid for the radar, was not involved the negotiations.

    Mr Ndugai added that they stated the government’s intention to take legal action against all those involved in the scandal. British officials who met the team included members of various parliamentary committees, Transparency International representatives, Department for International Development (DFID) officials and BAE Systems representatives.

    A member of the team, Mr Mussa Azzan “Zungu”, said the International Development Committee of the House of Commons expressed its disappointment over the way the matter was handled.He said the committee had invited representatives of Tanzania’s Parliament to a public hearing on the controversy on July 19.

    Mr Azzan said the committee had summoned BAE Systems, the SFO, government officials and other stakeholders to explain the role of each institution in the radar deal.He added that a number of British officials were perplexed as to why the company wanted to refund the money through charity organisations while it was the government that paid for the radar.

    Another member of the committee, Ms Angela Kairuki, accused some Tanzanians of conspiring against the government. “While in Britain, we were shown some emails and other documents written by Tanzanians, urging BAE not to return the money to the government, and instead channel it through NGOs,” she said.Ms Kairuki said BAE Systems insisted on channelling the money though charities because it feared further tarnishing its image before the international community.

    “Their charity budget in Britain and other countries does not exceed £3 million a year... it seems like they want to use our money to market their company,” she said.Ms Kairuki said that BAE System had established a board that was expected to oversee the disbursement of the money through charities, adding that there was no Tanzanian in the board.There has been heated debate as to how the money should be repaid to Tanzania, with the government insisting that the funds be paid directly to it.

    But BAE Systems maintains that the money should be paid to British NGOs working in the country. The Opposition has also expressed its disapproval of BAE Systems’ decision.However, other people, including some opposition politicians and activists, have opposed both the governments’ and BAE Systems’ proposals. They say the money should be channelled back to the country through Tanzania-based charities.
  2. M

    Mdondoaji JF-Expert Member

    Jul 7, 2011
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    Huyu aliyewashauri anawachuza kwani burden of proof has to be provided. Uchunguzi ukifanyika Chenge, Idrissa na wote waliohusika katika hiyo scandal watafichuliwa na kufungwa ndipo serikali ya Tanzania italipwa hela yao.
  3. simplemind

    simplemind JF-Expert Member

    Jul 7, 2011
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    BAE should channel the money through Tanzania based charities.If this is not possible BAE is well adviced to follow Wemmicks advice to Pip regarding financial matter(Great Expectation)/of six bridges across Thames as high as chelsea reach ie London,Southwark,8lackfriars, Waterloo,Westminister and Vauxhall) choose one and take a walk upon it and pitch your(our) money into the Thames over centre arch of your Bridge and you know the end of it.Serve a friend(Tz Govt.) with it and you MAY know the end of it too -but it is less pleasant and profitable end.Wanainchi tunasema hili kwa uchungu.
  4. Kamakabuzi

    Kamakabuzi JF-Expert Member

    Jul 7, 2011
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    Mr. Chikawe is missleading the public. SFO did not clear Mr. Chenge as he alleges; it was when BAE decided to settle this matter outside the court by admitting a minor offence, that parsuing the matter (investigations) stopped. The other reason was poor cooperation given by pccb to sfo.
  5. B

    Byendangwero JF-Expert Member

    Jul 8, 2011
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    The report submittes by that delegation of MPS in my opinion it's not worthy the paper it is written on; for in the first instance it doesnot disclose anything which was not known before, and morever it distorts some of the facts. For instance it terms the award that was granted by the court as "refund" when actually the court termed it as ex-gratia. For that reason the money spent on that trip amounts to misuse of public funds and hence the one who authorised that trip ought to be brought to books.
  6. ubun2

    ubun2 Senior Member

    Jul 8, 2011
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    1) Ag of a country is responsible for all contracts signed! ALL contracts go through his office. He approves the contracts!
    2) An individual who holds the position of a Minister of Good governance and from that position he "clears" a gvt. official who was throughly investigated by the SFO, the SFO presented credible evidence to the PCCB concerning this AG's role in the matter and yet the Minister of Good Governance grants him "protection", the question is who is this minister working for? Is he working for his "friend" or is he serving the ppl of Tanzania. Obviously, the answer is right before our eyes, he is not qualified, not fit for the gvt. seat he is occupying for his position is only there to benefit his "friend". In fact what he is doing is promoting "goon Governance"! A total shame! Nothing short of total government failure!
    3) The PCCB/the current regime of TZ, in not prosecuting the suspects shows that this gvt. has no political will to combat corruption, has no moral/ethical compass/ is not serving the ppl of Tanzania but their "friends"/ is not able to comprehend concepts of rule of law, justice, human rights-this all means the government has failed!
    4)In Mwalimu Nyerere's words, corruption was the enemy of justice & that is exactly what is unfolding in this current scenario when a mInister of good governance (with all the evidence presented before him) protects a suspect allegedly responsible for committing a scam where millions of dollars were stolen.
    5) Another question to be asked is exactly how much money does this former AG have, has he ever declared his assets? After all during his time as an AG numerous controversial contracts were signed by the gvt. Was he not the same person who in public compared a million dollars to just some cents-so exactly how much money does this person have when he is able to dismiss a million dollars as just some cents. & where did all his millions/billions of dollars come from?