Two Interrogated As Gold Intercepted At Port

THE Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA), in collaboration with security organs at the Dar es Salaam Port, has impounded a consignment of gold valued at 507.3m/- that was due to be transported illegally to Zanzibar.

The 6.244 kilogrammes of gold that was impounded at the port’s passengers’ premises was packed in five bars and hidden in a small bag. The gemstones that were later confirmed to be gold by an expert from the ministry of minerals, Mr Terence Ngole, were being smuggled by two suspects who were identified as Akifa Mohammed and Jaffer Hussein, according to a statement from TPA.

The suspects failed to produce any document or permit allowing them to export the minerals. They are currently being grilled at the Bandari police station over illegal possession of minerals.

On October 10, 2017 at around 5:20p.m the port’s officers, in collaboration with other security personnel, nabbed the two suspects in possession of the consignment, during the passenger, cargo and vehicle inspection prior to boarding MV Azam Seal Link 1.

According to a statement, the suspects, aboard a Toyota Noah T434 BRG which was also seized, arrived at the port as normal passengers. “The driver of the vehicle is still at large and the law enforcers have already launched a manhunt for him,” read the statement in part.

The TPA Director General, Engineer Deusdedith Kakoko, warned people who were intending to use Dar es Salaam Port as a loophole for smuggling goods to stay away, stressing that relevant organs were working around the clock to ensure absolute security at the port.

“The exercise is being carried out thoroughly all the time when ships get in and out in collaboration with good citizens,” he said. This is the second time the law enforcers are intercepting consignments of minerals.

On August 31, police impounded a consignment of undervalued diamonds at the Julius Nyerere International Airport en route to Belgium from Mwadui Diamond Mine. A consignment was intercepted before the aircraft left the country’s global gateway – and exported by Williamson Diamonds Ltd.

It was undervalued and pegged at US Dollars 14.7 million against its market actual value at US Dollars 29.5 million (65bn/-). On September 9, the Minister for Finance and Planning, Dr Philip Mpango, ordered the forfeiture of the 65bn/- diamond gemstones and ordered the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) Director General, Mr Valentino Mlowola, to launch investigations and book all the per petrators.

Meanwhile, police have completed the major part of investigations to try two sole Government Diamond Valuers, Archard Kalugendo (49) and Edward Rweyemamu (50), who are charged with occasioning a 2.5bn/- loss to the government of the United Republic of Tanzania.

This was said by State Attorney Wankyo Simon, for the prosecution, at the Kisutu Resident Magistrate’s Court in Dar es Salaam yesterday when the case came for mention. “There were some few areas that have not been covered.

Possibly, at the next mention date we will provide the status of investigations so far,” he told Resident Magistrate Godfrey Mwambapa. The trial attorney requested the court to adjourn the case to another date as investigations into the matter had not been completed.

The magistrate granted the request and set October 26 as the mention date. Kalugendo, who is the Director of the Tanzania Sorting Company (TANSORT) and Rweyemamu, the government diamond valuer, allegedly committed the offence on diverse dates between August 25 and 31, this year, at different places in Dar es Salaam and Shinyanga regions.

It is alleged that, by their willful acts, being government diamond valuers employed by the Ministry of Energy and Minerals, jointly and together, they caused the government of the United Republic of Tanzania to suffer a pecuniary loss of 1,118,291.43 US dollars, which is 2,486,397,982.54.

The arraignment of the duo comes after a Parliamentary Select Committee on diamonds presented its report to National Assembly Speaker Job Ndugai, revealing gross irregularities in the supervision and regulation of the 100 billion US dollar business.

According to the report, while the Ministry of Energy and Minerals documents show that the country had extracted diamond minerals weighing 1.47 million tonnes, the statement is contradicted by the report from the Tanzania Mineral Audit Agency (TMAA) which recorded 1.51 million tonnes.

The minerals were valued at 367.3 million US dollars, against 374.6 million US dollars. Despite the value of the mineral, Tanzania is the only country in Africa trading diamond at a low price of around 300 US dollars per carat compared to Botswana that trades the same at an average of 1,900 US dollars.

Select Committee Chairman, Mr Mussa Zungu, revealed when presenting the report further that the committee had also found the record regarding royalties between 2007 and 2016. The ministry’s report shows about 18 million US dollars was paid against 15 million US dollars registered in TMAA statement.

“There was no explanation from both parties regarding differences in the statements, although they are all government offices,” Mr Zungu is quoted as saying when presenting the report in question.

Surprisingly, however, he said, the TRA records indicated that between 2007 and 2016, diamonds weighing 942,099 tons was extracted, contrary to the 1.51 million tons reported by TMAA.

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Two Interrogated As Gold Intercepted At Port

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Posted by on Oct 13 2017. Filed under Tanzania. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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