Continue listening to public views on IGA, Speaker tells MPs

TANZANIA : SPEAKER of the National Assembly, Dr Tulia Ackson has asked Members of Parliament (MPs) to continue listening to views aired by the public on various issues which they would like the government to act upon, so that they (legislators) can properly offer their advice.

Dr Tulia issued the directives to legislators on day in Parliament after the Questions and Answers session during which she briefly spoke on the views offered by the public on the Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) that the National Assembly gave a green light through a resolution about two months ago.

About two months ago, the MPs passed IGA resolution between Tanzania and the Emirates of Dubai that aims at developing, improving, managing and operating the sea and lake ports in areas like special economic zones, logistic parks and trade corridors.

In her advice to the MPs yesterday, Speaker Tulia said it was not proper for the legislators to start responding to public views on various issues that cropped up between the last Parliamentary meeting and to-date, especially on IGA resolution, given the fact that the House had already completed its business on the matter.

However, she said since MPs were serving as the representatives of the electorate, it was necessary to continue listening to them so that they could play their advisory and watchdog role in future if the government will bring the matter for further procedures.

“Since we, the MPs, had endorsed the resolution on IGA, it simply means that the House had finished its task. What we should now do is to continue listening to the views of the public so that when the government brings this matter at the next stage of concessional agreement, we can now play our advisory and watchdog role,” she said.

The Speaker assured the general public that nothing would go wrong since the Parliament was bestowed with the mandate to know the contents of various agreements that the government entered with investors or other parties by recalling them for scrutiny for the benefit of all sides involved.

The government has at different times responded to the public views on IGA, saying what was agreed was just an agreement on cooperation between Tanzania and the Emirates of Dubai and not a concessional agreement.

However, the government has been insisting it is open to listening to public views, adding that the opinion expressed will be worked upon.

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