DODOMA: THE National Assembly has advised the government to work on several challenges facing the infrastructure sector in the country, including increasing the budget for the Tanzania National Roads Agency (TANROADS) from the current 1.4tri/- to 5tri/- to enhance its efficiency.
Other areas in which the MPs recommended worked are Marine Service Company Limited (MSCL), Tanzania Buildings Agency (TBA), Land Transport Regulatory Authority (LATRA) and Tanzania Airports Authority (TAA).
The list also included cybercrime, Tanzania Telecommunication Corporation (TTCL) and Tanzania Posts Corporation (TPC) which is debt-ridden and faces low capital.
Presenting a report on activities implemented by the Parliamentary Committee on Infrastructure Development here on Monday, Chairman Selemani Kakoso said that road construction in the country is facing budget constraints, noting that as of December last year, a total of 94 projects were completed and the government owed contractors 386.36bn/-.
He also noted that there were 69 ongoing road projects with unpaid debt of 392.608bn/-, thus making a total of the entire debt to be 778bn/- which he said, may increase due to interest charges.
Mr Kakoso further said 1.4tri/- has been allocated for TANROADS, which is not sufficient noting that, 5tri/- is needed of which 3tri/- is for the construction of roads and bridges and 2tri/- for road rehabilitation.
On MSCL, he said that the MPs have also resolved that the budget for the company should be increased to strengthen its operations.
“MSCL is facing a shortage of funds and lack of actual revenue and expenditure and the long time spent in renovating its marine vessels has been affecting its operations,” he said.
Kakoso who is also Mpanda Rural MP said that the government should speed up the rehabilitation of MV Lihemba and MV Mwongozo and plan to bring another cargo ship which, will transport cargo brought by the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) when it commences operations.
He also said that the government should consider deploying a fishing vessel on the coast of the Indian Ocean, Lake Tanganyika and Lake Nyasa.
Regarding TAA, he said the committee identified challenges including a shortage of employees, contractors not being paid on time, dilapidated infrastructure, buildings and equipment.
TAA projects were being implemented in a way that did not benefit the community through Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), he said.
He said the situation affects the authority’s efficiency and slowing down the development of airports in the country,
“The National Assembly advises TAA be enabled to recruit employees and be empowered financially to improve its infrastructure and pay the contractors on time
On cybercrime, he said the problem has been affecting the country’s economy, society, well-being and values, thus MPS resolves that the government should strengthen control of the internet while respecting the importance of democracy.
Kakoso said that for TTCL, which has failed to operate commercially, the National Assembly advised the government to ensure that the company is financially empowered so that it can have the capital to operate profitably.
Regarding the debt and limited capital of the Tanzania Postal Corporation (TPC) he said that despite the government’s efforts to revive the corporation, the MPs have advised the government to bear the outstanding debt of 26.8bn/- to clean up the corporation’s balance sheet and enable it to borrow.