Bill places intelligence, security service under president mandate

THE National Assembly on Thursday endorsed three bills including the Tanzania Intelligence and Security Service (Amendment) Bill 2023, in which, among other things will aim at making the department align with the current administrative and global security practices.

Others are the Planning Commission Bill 2023 and the Laws Revision (Miscellaneous Amendments) 2023.

Minister of State in the President’s Office, Public Service Management and Good Governance Mr George Simbachawene said the Security Service (Amendment) Bill will also put in place effective implementation of functions of the department.

“The amendments have kept the Act up-to-date and address various challenges so far observed in the implementation of the law,” the minister said.

The changes also removed all the provisions concerning the administration of the Minister responsible for intelligence and security and instead, placing the mandate under the President.

The Bill placed the Intelligence and Security Service under the mandate of the President, by removing the controls of the Minister responsible for Foreign Affairs, the Chief Secretary and the Attorney General of various matters pertaining to the administration of intelligence and security.

It also conferred to the service a defence and security status and places it under the general superintendence of the President.

The Bill also added vital security related functions, which the Tanzania Intelligence and Security Service (TISS) currently implements.

The functions include provision of personal protection of national leaders and foreign dignitaries, protection of vital installations, the carrying out of security vetting investigation or security clearance of leaders and control of security threats or potential security threats to the security of United Republic.

The changes also added the responsibility of the Minister in the Act. The amendment aims to facilitate policy affairs of the service undertaken through the Minister.

The Planning Commission Bill 2023 intends to establish the Planning Commission, which will be under the President’s Office.

The commission will be responsible for designing, planning, coordinating and managing development plans in order to have inclusive system for monitoring and evaluation of the implementation of national development priorities.

The changes will enable the government to have a joint system of sectorial plans especially on the sectors with   interdependent responsibilities.

The sectors will also have a legal system and special organ for managing preparations and implementation of development plans, research and advice the government on national development priorities contrary to the current system where the responsibilities are being carried out by the Ministry of Finance and Planning.

According to the changes, the Planning Commission will be led by the President as Chairman and six other members to be appointed by the President, including the Minister responsible for development plans and the Minister responsible for financial affairs.

In addition, the Act has been amended for the commission to have the position of executive secretary and deputy executive secretaries, who will be appointed by the President.

The amendments also had made the main sources of funds for the operation of the commission to come from the funds approved by the National Assembly through the annual budget and grants.

Also, as in other public institutions that depend on the government’s budget, the accounts of the commission will be audited by the Controller and Auditor General (CAG).

The Laws Revision (Miscellaneous Amendments) 2023 included amendment of eight laws namely the Corporations Sole (Establishment) Act, Cap. 119, the Excise (Management and Tariff) Act, Cap. 147, the Income Tax Act, Cap. 332, the Interpretation of Laws Act, Cap. 1, the Laws Revision Act, Chapter 4, the Social Security Act, Cap. 135, the Tanzania Revenue Authority Act, Cap. 399 and the Workers’ Compensation Act, Cap. 263.

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