The Ethics Secretariat will carry out a countrywide verification of wealth declared by public leaders as a legal requirement, Commissioner Salome Kaganda told journalists in Dar es Salaam yesterday.
She described the planned exercise as normal, but added: “We decided to be more transparent this time to let the public know that even after the leaders have declared their wealth the Secretariat makes a follow up to establish whether what has been declared is true,” Judge Kaganda said.
She said if it was established that the information given was false, measures would be taken against the culprits, explaining that this included a reprimand, severe reprimand, demotion or being sacked.
Judge Kaganda said the exercise will be carried in all zones including and headquarters. Theye include the Southern highlands, Western, Central, Northern, Southern and Lake Zones
She said the exercise was scheduled to commence on February 20 and go up to March 1, this year, aiming at verifying declarations made by 60 leaders.
“Since the number is big the Ethics Secretariat will start to verify the declarations of 60 leaders and then proceed to verify the declarations by other leaders,” Kaganda said.
Commissioner Kaganda called upon leaders lined up for the exercise to cooperate with Secretariat officials to make the verification smooth.
She also urged wananchi to assist the officials with information which could help them to discover any hidden wealth suspected to belong to the public leaders.
“Cooperation and transparency are basis of the implementation of this exercise and we believe that we can have a country with ethical leaders,” Commissioner Kaganda said.
Assistant Secretary Political Leaders Division Coletha Kiwale said the 60 leaders lined up for the verification exercise had already been provided with letters informing about the exercise and guidance on what they were supposed to do during the exercise, adding that leaders not named in the list should not submit to verficiation.
Kiwale however warned the leaders to be alert against people who may pretend to be Ethics Secretariat officials, saying that the officials to conduct the exercise will be given special identity cards.
Among the leaders lined up for verification is the Minister of East African Cooperation Samuel Sitta, Dar es Salaam Mayor Didas Massaburi, National Housing Corporation’s Director General Nehemia Mchechu.
Others are Deputy Commissioner General for Tanzania Revenue Authority Placidus Luoga, Rukwa Regional Commissioner Stella Manyanya and Lindi Regional Commissioner Ludovic Mwananzila.
But the secretariat did not say whether former top leaders had declared their wealth or not.
Last month Ethics Secretariat said that over 1,500 leaders bound by law to declare their wealth were yet to return to the Ethics Secretariat the forms containing the information, to beat the deadline which was December 31.
The ethics secretariat cited primary court magistrates, ambassadors and councilors as the cadre with the majority of defaulters.
According to the Secretariat out of 8,972 civil servants and political leaders, 1594 were yet to return the forms.
It says the department of Ethics for Public Service Servants will continue taking measures against all leaders who fail to abide by the law and leadership ethics.