Two firms contracted to collect 244bn/- TANESCO debts

THE government through the Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited (TANESCO) has contracted two private firms that will soon start collecting 244bn/- that the state-owned power utility firm owes public and private customers in accumulated debts.

Deputy Minister for Energy, Stephen Byabato told the National Assembly on Tuesday that the outstanding debts had been accumulated for a long time and that in Public Entities TANESCO was supposed to collect about 86bn/- and that already his ministry had written to the treasury to demand that the debts be cleared amicably.

He was responding to a supplementary question by Asha Abdallah Juma (Special Seats-CCM) who had demanded to know why the government was not taking immediate legal measures to ensure that the debts were paid.

“There have been many measures taken by TANESCO to ensure that the 244bn/- accumulated in debts are paid but the pace has always stayed low, why can’t we apply legal measures to have the money paid?’’ queried the MP.

However, when responding, the deputy minister said that the court redress was not an option save for those who were reluctant to payafter being served with debt invoices.

During the main question asked on her behalf by Ms Juma, Special Special Seats legislator Tauhida Gallos wanted to know the government’s plans to collect the TANESCO’s debt so that it can be able to stand on its own.

Responding, the deputy minister said that as of March 2023, the state-owned power utility firm was owing a whopping 244bn/- both public and private customers in accumulated debts.

“In preventing the debt from ballooning and putting up measures for debt collection, the government has always been allocating enough funds for electricity services to avoid accumulating debts,’’ he said.

According to Mr Byabato, TANESCO had put up debt collection strategies and prevented new debts by putting up LUKU Metres, and making up close follow-ups on debts as well as cutting-off power to customers with huge debts until they clear their dues.

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