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Badilisha Lugha KISWAHILI

Indian envoy challenges MPs on graft

27th January 2011
India`s High Commissioner to Tanzania, Kocheril Bhaghirath (2nd-L) shakes hands with guests at ceremony at the High Commission`s grounds in Dar es Salaam yesterday to mark his country’s Republic Day. (Photo: Tryphone Mweji)

The Indian High Commissioner to Tanzania, Kocheril Bhagirath, yesterday challenged Members of the 10th Parliament to raise issues and propose recommendations to fight corruption in private and public sectors.

“The legislators need to be more aggressive, highlight issues in the forthcoming Parliament that would help the country get out of corruption,” the Indian envoy said shortly after delivering a speech at the celebrations to mark the 62nd India Republic Day in Dar es Salaam yesterday.

He said corruption was a norm all over the world, including India, but insisted that the Tanzanian government must be more transparent in decision making as a way of fighting against the vice.

The envoy explained that the 10th Parliament has a number of young members who he believed could support efforts that had already been made by the government in curbing corruption in Tanzania.

“Corruption is not an easy thing to deal with; it is all over the world, even in my country. The important thing is for the Tanzanian government to increase transparency when negotiating on matters pertaining to public funds and agreements in order to prevent any possible chances of corrupt practice,” he said.

Nevertheless, the envoy commended the government of Tanzania for the efforts made in the fight against grand corruption.

Bhagirath said the government of India was committed to supporting Tanzania in three areas of development namely, agriculture, education and investment, adding that last year his country spent USD1.3bn in support those sectors.

The envoy said in the agricultural sector his government’s plan was to supply more tractors and power tillers this year to boost the ‘Kilimo Kwanza’ initiative.

According to him, in the education sector, his government had provided a number of scholarships to Tanzanian students to pursue various courses in India, including information technology.

He added that his country had sent specialists to Tanzania to train experts as a way of reducing the cost of sending students to India.

On the 62nd Indian Republic Day the High Commissioner said it was a day to recall with gratitude the sacrifices made by the freedom fighters and the work of the founding fathers for his country where dignity and individual freedoms were guaranteed by an enlightened constitution.

He said despite the achievements made by his country, a number of goals were yet to be accomplished.

He said his country targeted to empower the poor and the marginalised sections of population so that they too could become part of the growth story of the nation.

The envoy called upon Indian citizens working in Tanzania to maintain peace, saying in case of any problem they should communicate with the commission because it was put in the country in order to help them.

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