The National Milling Corporation which was privatised a few years ago is still in operation, run by a single employee, according to the Parastatal Organisations Accounts Committee (POAC).
The committee in a meeting with officials from the CHC, among other things disclosed that the state purchasing agency for foodstuffs, National Milling Corporation (NMC) is still operational, despite its long and widely assumed collapse.
POAC Chairman Zitto Kabwe, speaking to the press after the meeting declined to disclose the source of the information, stating only that to everyone’s astonishment, NMC maintains the lone employee (unidentified) who single handedly manages all remaining assets.
The former milling parastatal was among the public entities sold to private companies or individuals under the Presidential Parastatal Sector Reform Commission (PSRC).
The said the employee is reported to be surviving or as suspicions suggest, thriving on rent collections from several unsuspecting tenants.
The individual’s name was withheld for fear of jeopardising the inquiry. Kabwe issued this statement, “…he is assisting us to access relevant information, disclosing his name will interfere with the investigation...”
According to him, there are some tenants (number unspecified) who have been supposedly leasing NMC buildings for over 20 years yet have apparently paid no rent in the entire span of their tenure. “…some of the properties were illegally sold…” he alleged. He did offer an encouraging remark pertaining the illegally procured properties, “…some cases are already in the courts…” he assured the public.
“We need to be extra careful to ensure that public properties are not mishandled…” the chairman cautioned. Whereas most were turned to him for answers, he seemed as bewildered as the rest of the nation, asking, “...who knew that NMC is still operating?” He did offer a bit of inside information divulging that the milling company’s accounts have not been audited since 2008.
Kabwe has also announced plans by the POAC to form a sub-committee of three people to investigate allocation of public properties under the the former Presidential Parastatal Sector Reform Commission and the Consolidated Holdings Corporation (CHC).
The objectives of the probe have not been publicized and neither have the names of its members. The scope of the inquiry has also not been framed nor a completion deadline set. Kabwe has, however, promised to release the information when the investigation is exhausted.
“We will inform Tanzanians on the findings of the committee because there are so many properties including plots of which we don’t exactly know their whereabouts.”
National Milling Corporation (NMC) was established in 1968 by an Act of parliament to play a central role in providing Tanzanians with basic food supplies, through processing and storage of grains. The company owned major real estate in land and properties including processing plants, warehouses and residential quarters for employees.
Due to poor management, among other reasons, it was supposedly in part consolidated and in part liquidated during the mass privatization of the early and mid-nineties. General assumption has been that the company is non- existent until like the ghost of disgruntled employee, emerge to haunt all concerned, in this case the entire nation.