Govt to control over 300 unofficial routes along Kenya-Tanzania

26Jul 2021
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Govt to control over 300 unofficial routes along Kenya-Tanzania

HOME Affairs minister George Simbachawene yesterday vowed to control more than 300 unauthorised exits along the Tanzania-Kenya border at Holili and Tarakea in Rombo District, Kilimanjaro Region.

Simbachawene said the existence of the unofficial exits have been contributing to the government losing huge amount of revenues as the routes are used by smugglers to transport contraband from one side to another.

The Minister made the remarks during his meeting with officials from various institutions working at the border areas after he inspected the border posts and listened to their reports.

“This is not acceptable, it must be worked upon, I have received it but you should understand that that among basic issues for a country is to control its borders, you cannot claim to have a country while people enter and exit as they wish, it is not acceptable, I will sit with my fellow ministers and Permanent Secretaries to see how we can deal with it,” he said.

“This is a b sic issue for the country, I cannot make any judgement on it alone, I will work on it to make sure people use authorized routes to enable the government to get its rightful revenue,” Simbachawene added.

For his part, Officer in Charge for Immigration at Holili Border Post Eliaichi Marandu told the minister that they were faced with challenges from the existence of these unauthorized routes, the situation that makes it difficult for them to control smuggling despite great efforts to conduct frequent patrols.

“These unofficial exits are in various areas, including Kamwanga, Rongai up to Holili, more than 300 of them, and are big as big trucks go through hence it is difficult to control them, despite patrols we conduct from time to time,” Eliaichi said,

However, apart from these border challenges, the Tarakea border post has surpassed revenue collection target whereby beginning July last year, the post had targeted to collect 23bn/-, but by June this year, it collected more than 15bn/.

Simbachawene completed his two-day visit in Kilimanjaro Region and today (July 26) is expected to start his visit in Arusha Region to inspect the work performed by institutions under his ministry including various projects.

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