Tanzania: Take to Court Dishonest Union Leaders, Tizeba Directs

Masasi — Agriculture minister Charles Tizeba, on Thursday ordered immediate arrest of leaders of cooperative unions alleged to have misappropriated funds supposed to be paid to farmers. Dr Tizeba issued the order as he wound-up a three-day Mtwara regional tour.

He said it was not acceptable to see some unfaithful people committing such a crime and then be left free.

Farmers have not been paid for their crops collected by cooperatives in unexplained past marketing seasons. “Leaders of these cooperative unions who have failed to account for farmers’ money must be arrested immediately. They should face justice. Further, steps should be taken to ensure farmers are paid their money,” the minister ordered officials.

The minister was appalled by and denounced the very casual attitude taken by officials to recover farmers’ money from the accused.

He observed that it was not right to simply ask the alleged embezzlers to account for the money.

Dr Tizeba said if some people were to be allowed to steal from the poor, the goal of achieving a middle-income status would never materialise.

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