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Gold miners cause village hardships

Discussion in 'Jukwaa la Siasa' started by tibwilitibwili, Mar 5, 2008.

  1. t

    tibwilitibwili Senior Member

    Mar 5, 2008
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    RELIGIOUS leaders and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) have called on the government to ensure that companies that are involved in large scale mining be forced to pay reparations for the socio-economic hardships that they cause to local communities.

    Two independent researchers, Mark Curtis and Tundu Lissu, who were briefing the Reference Group on the contents of a mining report titled: “A golden Opportunity” said today that there was little government scrutiny on the activities of large scale miners.

    The reference group consists of top religious leaders, Members of Parliament and members of CSOs. The group, who commissioned the report today, also discussed a report on how Tanzania fails to benefit from gold mining.

    The report has come up with recommendations that the government should review mining and tax laws to boost economic revenues. The report also suggested that mining contracts be transparent.

    Mr Lissu spoke strongly about the findings. He said there was enough evidence that warrants the indictment of mining agents and other international organisations for ignoring the suffering of communities that live in the vicinity of mines.

    Statistics indicate that miners’ income surged up to 37 million US Dollars a year during former President Ali Hassan Mwinyi’s leadership when miners enjoyed more freedom. This can be traced in the Bank of Tanzania records, Mr Lissu said.

    Mr Curtis said in the past five years Tanzania has exported gold worth more than 2.5bn US Dollars in an industry dominated by two multi-national mining companies - the Canadian Company, Barrick and the South African-based AngloGold Ashanti.

    However, the country continues to receive paltry royalties and taxes. He also said the existing mining contracts must be made public and subjected to parliamentary scrutiny as recommended by the report.

    Source: Daily News
  2. t

    tibwilitibwili Senior Member

    Mar 5, 2008
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    Dar es Salaam

    A NEW report released yesterday has once again highlighted inherent
    problems in Tanzania’s mining sector regime, where foreign-owned mines
    continue to post record exports while ordinary citizens wallow in poverty.

    ’’Gold mining is the fastest growing sector of Tanzania’s economy.
    Minerals now account for nearly half the country’s exports and Tanzania is
    Africa’s third largest gold producer,’’ says the report aptly titled ’’A
    Golden Opportunity? � How Tanzania is Failing to Benefit from Gold

    It adds: ’’Yet ordinary Tanzanians are not benefiting from this boom both
    because tax laws are overly favourable to multinational companies and
    because of the practices of these companies. Tanzania is being plundered
    of its natural resources and wealth.’’

    The report is highly critical of the foreign-owned gold mines operating in
    the country, estimating that at a ’’very conservative estimate,’’ the
    combined loss to Tanzania over the past seven years from low royalty
    rates, unpaid corporation tax and tax evasion amount to a staggering $400m
    (approx. 480bn/-).

    ’’We also estimate that the concentration of gold mining in the hands of
    large multinational companies at the expense of small-scale artisan miners
    has put 400,000 people out of work,’’ says the report.

    The report was authored by Mark Curtis, an independent author, journalist
    and consultant and Tundu Lissu, a well-known local lawyer and activist.

    ’’The losses do neither cover the financial costs or other tax incentives
    such as Value Added Tax (VAT) exemption, which are extremely difficult to
    estimate,’’ states the report.

    The report was published by the Christian Council of Tanzania (CCT),
    National Muslims Council of Tanzania (BAWKATA) and the Tanzania Episcopal
    Conference Centre (TEC). It was financed by the Norwegian Church Aid and
    Christian Aid.

    The report portrays the mining regime in Tanzania as a sector engulfed by
    top secrecy and urges the government to improve transparency in the mining

    According to Curtis and Lissu, the report focused on three key issues
    including tax revenues from gold mining, democracy and corruption and
    local economic development.

    Curtis said the Tanzanian government has received a paltry $13 to $28.7m
    annually in all taxes and royalties from the large-scale gold mines
    operating in the country, but there were still other lost income streams.

    Some of the lost income streams include $61m over the past seven years by
    not setting the royalty rate for gold at the preferred five per cent, or
    $136m by not setting it even at 7.5 per cent, he explained.

    He said around $57m on unpaid corporation tax was lost based on what just
    two companies -- Anglo Gold Ashanti and Barrick Gold Corp. -- declared as
    their gross profits.

    Furthermore, he said $132.5m of tax evasion discovered by an Alex Stuart
    Assayers audit together with $25m unconfirmed royalty payments and $50m
    failed to be set aside by the mining companies for environmental
    rehabilitations, also amounted to lost income.

    On his part, Lissu said on community development, the Ashanti and Geita
    gold mines spent only 700m/- in supporting various communal services in
    areas surrounding the mines although they exported gold worth billions of

    The Kigoma North MP, Zitto Kabwe (CHADEMA), said the report unveiled
    yesterday would be a useful tool in the ongoing work of the mining review
    team appointed by President Jakaya Kikwete.

    Zitto is also a member of the government’s mining review committee chaired
    by Judge Mark Bomani.

    Fredrik Glad-Gjernes, the Norwegian Church Aid country representative,
    criticised Canada’s involvement in Tanzania’s mining sector.

    ’’I am ashamed of all these evils for which my country (Canada) is doing
    to Tanzania because it is benefiting enormously while Tanzania, rich in
    mining resources, was getting nothing,’’ he said.

    On his part Bishop Peter Kitula, from Christian Council of Tanzania said
    there were severe environmental destructions caused by uncontrolled
    chemicals from mining activities which have been left to flow randomly.
  3. Dua

    Dua JF-Expert Member

    Mar 6, 2008
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    A displaced woman lies on the ground yesterday as she feeds her baby in a tent donated by Dar es Salaam Regional Commissioner Abbas Kandoro. She is from one of an estimated 500 families displaced when 96 houses were demolished at Tabata Mandela.

    Kweli Watanzania tuna kazi kubwa.
  4. M

    Mwafrika wa Kike JF-Expert Member

    Mar 6, 2008
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    Asante Dua kwa hii picha maana inaonekana Mheshimiwa Kikwete kuna vitu kibao havipati!
  5. K

    Kimbembe Senior Member

    Mar 6, 2008
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    Nani kabomoa nyumba hizi na kwa sababu gani ? Maeneo ya Tabata nako kuna madini ?Maana maeneo ya madini watu hawana maisha wako kama wanyapa pori they way they are treated.
  6. M

    Mwafrika wa Kike JF-Expert Member

    Mar 6, 2008
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    Kuna maswali mengi ya kujiuliza kuhusu mwelekeo wa Tanzania na nadhani hii picha ni mfano mojawapo!