Ministry follows up 4bn/- Resolute debt to District Council

Australian based Resolute Resources still owes Nzega District Council close to 4bn/- in service levy after operating in the area for more than 15 years mining gold.

The Deputy Minister for Energy and Minerals , Steven Massele told parliament last week that his ministry was assisting the district council in following up the matter. Mr Masele commended Nzega legislator, Dr Hamis Kigwangalla for closely following up the issue even after being paid over 2bn/- by the company.

“At the ministry, we will make sure that the balance is paid,” he noted while winding up debate over Parliamentary Energy and Minerals Committee presented by Victor Mwambalaswa.

Contributing to the debate, Dr Kigwangalla stressed that the balance has to be paid to allow residents of his constituency plan development work. “With the 2bn/- that we got, we have agreed to establish our community bank and construction company which will drill boreholes and repair council roads,” he argued.

He pointed out that after years of pressuring the Australian company which has already closed down the mining site, district council levy is finally being paid.

“We hope the ministry will help us get the balance so that we can fund development projects in Nzega,” he argued. Resolute operated Golden Pride open pit mine between 1999 and last year when it closed down having produced gold valued at 3.3 billion US dollars (over 5.1trn/-) at current prices.

The company was supposed to pay 200,000 US dollars per annum in service levy to Nzega District Council but never paid a dime during the 13 year period of operations.

The company invested 48 million US dollars and was initially supposed to close down in 2005 but an upgrade gold deposits from 1.6 to 2.6 million tonnes in 2002 meant that its lifespan was extended to December 2012. Presenting the committee’s report, Mr Mwambalaswa urged the government to empower State Mining Corporation so that it can directly engage in mining investment.

“The government should aim at developing an autonomous Stamico with capacity to invest and create large scale mining projects,” Mwambalaswa noted.

Stamico which has already established a subsidiary known as Stamigold Company Limited acquired Tulawaka gold mining from African Barrick Gold.
Source: Daily News, reported by Finnigani wa Simbeye from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
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