TAZARA is depressing – MD

Wed, 01 Mar 2017 13:06:59 +0000



TANZANIA Zambia Railways Authority (TAZARA) is depressing and not only is it broke but it is a broken organisation, company chief executive officer Bruno Ching’ambu has told the Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee.

Mr Ching’ambu said if TAZARA was a private company, it would have collapsed a long time ago but that the only reason why it was existing was a little help it was getting from the government.

This came to light after the Howard Kunda-led Public Accounts Committee discovered, after interrogating the TAZARA managing director, that the company had been financially operating at a loss.

Mr Ching’ambu said the reason why TAZARA was depressing was that the equipment was very old and that the workforce was highly demotivated because of very poor wages.

He said the institution also had no capacity to buy spare parts and repair the equipment.

But Mr Kunda warned the TAZARA chief executive officer to put his house in order.

Mr Kunda observed that the report which had been presented by TAZARA was all about its operational failure.

Meanwhile, Ministry of Transport and Communications acting permanent secretary Yese Bwalya admitted before members of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) that TAZARA has not been remitting tax to the Zambia Revenue Authority and Tanzania Revenue Authority.

Mr Bwalya said during the period from 2011 to 2015, amounts totalling K237, 222, 863 were deducted as  PAYE from employees’ salaries but that as of August 2016 the tax had not been remitted to the Zambia Revenue Authority and Tanzania Revenue Authorities.

Mr Bwalya, who noted the observations made by the Auditor General, said the remittances to the Zambia Revenue Authority and Tanzania Revenue Authorities had been a challenge to TAZARA for a long time now, hence the huge unremitted amounts both in Tanzania and Zambia.

“TAZARA will engage the shareholding governments with a view of a 100 percent debt transfer to the two treasuries.

“As regards to remittances of the workers compensations funds to the board, TAZARA has put in measures to liquidate the outstanding amounts in monthly instalments while current assessments would be paid as they become due,” he said.

But Mr Kunda, who urged the managing director to put his house in order, said it was sad to hear that TAZARA had not been paying dividends since almost its inception.

“We expect that the Auditor General will not report that TAZARA is still recording the same issues raised,” he said.

Mr Kunda warned that the committee would not take TAZARA kindly should they appear before his committee on the same issues next year.

And Milenge Patriotic Front (PF) Member of Parliament Mwansa Mbulakulima said he was not surprised with a report that had been presented by TAZARA because the institution had been limping for a long time now.

Mr Mbulakulima told the managing director that TAZARA needed a Paradigm shift if the firm was to operate efficiently.




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