AIRPORT EXPANSION IN MWANZA AND DAR ES SALAAM COME UNDER FINANCIAL SCRUTINY
(Posted 02nd September 2016)
Bureaucrats involved in the construction of the new terminal at Dar es Salaam’s Julius Nyerere International Airport, but also the work carried out at Mwanza’s airport, are now shaking in their boots after President John Magufuli, when addressing the Annual Engineers Day of the Tanzania Engineers Registration Board’s convention earlier in the week, asked where the value was for the work done and where the money went.
President Magufuli, known for his no nonsense approach and vigour with which he tackled corruption during his first 9 months in office, publicly wondered how 345 million US Dollars or over 600 billion Tanzania Shillings could have been spent on the two projects, when the modernization of Dodoma airport – Dodoma is Tanzania’s political capital – only cost 11 billion TShs.
Such announcements, going by past experience, normally quickly end with officials being interrogated and investigated, including a social lifestyle audit, individuals being suspended and eventually charged in court with corruption and other offenses.
President Magufuli also affirmed that the two Bombardier Q400NG aircraft, which the government bought in cash to take advantage of a preferential deal, will arrive in Dar es Salaam later in the month and help Air Tanzania to resume operations on a larger scale.
Speculation is rife however among aviation pundits that additional aircraft will be ordered as the Magufuli administration has clearly made up its mind that the previously moribund national airline will be bailed out, restructured and then reclaim routes in a bid to become a major player once more in Tanzania’s aviation sector.