…TAZARA is asked to fend for it­self and pay salaries

Daily Nation Newspaper - - FRONT PAGE - By AARON CHIYANZO

THERE will be no gov­ern­ment bailout this time for the Tan­za­nia- Zam­bia Rail­ways (TAZARA), it has to fend for it­self and pay em­ployee salaries fol­low­ing the con­ducive busi­ness en­vi­ron­ment gov­ern­ment has cre­ated in the sec­tor, Min­is­ter of Trans­port and Com­mu­ni­ca­tion Brian Mushimba has said. This fol­lows TAZARA's fail­ure to pay em­ploy­ees their Septem­ber and Oc­to­ber salaries. Mr Mushimba said TAZARA could, how­ever, not con­tinue ap­proach­ing gov­ern­ment to re­quest for a bailout all the time. He re­it­er­ated that the rail­way com­pany needed to do more to raise and man­age its own salaries with­out ask­ing for help. Mr Mushimba said in an in­ter­view that the trea­sury was un­der a lot of stress be­cause of paras­tatals such as TAZARA that had failed to turn around fast enough to start pay­ing for their op­er­at­ing costs. He said TAZARA had man­aged to pay June and July salaries with­out any help won­dered why they should fail this time. Mr Mushimba said that gov­ern­ment had cre­ated an en­abling en­vi­ron­ment which should see the rail­way trans­port sub-sec­tor be­come vi­able by now. He said was be­cause of the en­abling en­vi­ron­ment that TAZARA had man­aged to set­tle its June and July obli­ga­tions. “The fact that TAZARA has stepped up and started pay­ing its salaries like they did in June and July is a good sign. TAZARA can­not con­tinue on a path of com­ing to gov­ern­ment all the time to ask for a bailout. The trea­sury is un­der a lot of stress be­cause of such paras­tatals,” he said. The min­is­ter urged TAZARA man­age­ment to pri­o­tise their spend­ing of the money it was col­lect­ing from its in­creased rev­enue. He stated that with the sign­ing of a statu­tory In­stru­ment to move 30 per­cent of heavy and bulk cargo by rail, there had been in­creased busi­ness for TAZARA. Mr Mushimba also dis­closed that TAZARA had en­tered into agree­ments with Cal­abash to bring more lo­co­mo­tives be­cause the com­pany was com­plain­ing that it had more busi­ness but less equip­ment to meet the de­mand.

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