Speaking to the Manyoni District Defense and Security Committee after finalising the exercise, Mganga said out of the 85 accused 15 had faced various charges in the district’s primary courts.
DPP pointed out that the big number of the accused were those facing economic sabotage offenses including invasion of forest reserves for mining, tree cutting and logging purposes.
He said before taking legal steps against the wananchi, it was essential for the concerned authorities to raise awareness on the importance of protecting the country’s natural resources.
According to Mganga for those needing to excavate for minerals for income, they are supposed to obtain licenses that would allow them to conduct mining activities in the restricted areas and those needing to cut trees for timber they should go to the areas reserved for the purpose and not in forest reserves.
“My request through the District defence and security committee is that you educate the wananchi, especially those living near or surrounding reserve areas not to go into those areas,” DPP Mganga said.
He further stressed that he has been forced to deliberately drop charges against all the accused persons not because they were not culpable, but after interrogation many confessed they made mistakes.
The Manyoni Senior District Court Magistrate Stella Kyama stressed that the visit by the DPP was not a small thing on the part of the Judiciary because there were many complaints against them that they do not work on cases that are brought to them.
“However we thank you very much for your presence and what is taking place in prisons I believe the society is seeing for themselves the big arm of the government in the manner it sees fit,” said Magistrate Kyama.
The Manyoni district commissioner who is the chairman of the defence and security committee Rahabu Mwagisa promised the DPP that the Manyoni District leadership will continue to educate the wananchi so that they never again enter the forest reserves.
“I have personally witnessed many able bodied youth who have gone to prison and stayed in remand instead of being engaged in national building,” the DC said.