The minister made the pledge here at the weekend addressing hundreds of the Tanzania/Zambia border town’s residents including traders.
"President Samia Suluhu Hassan has vowed to relieve women of water buckets off their heads by prioritizing the water sector, I received your complaints and we will implement her pledges,” said Dr Nchemba.
He explained that his ministry will make sure it provides the pledged funds to enable Tunduma residents get water and that the overall government’s aim is to see that by 2025 piped water availability in urban areas 95 per cent and in rural areas 85 per cent.
In regard to their complaints over high fertiliser prices he said the government was working on the issue and that experts from Finance and Agriculture ministries were reviewing various policy issues that would see the fertiliser prices go down.
"High fertiliser prices are not caused by taxes and levies that have been increased in the current Budget, but are caused by high prices of the farm input in foreign countries,” stressed the minister.
In regard to Tanzania traders shifting their businesses to Zambia, Dr Nchemba appealed to them to return as their complaints over taxes will be addressed.
The call followed reports from some traders telling the minister that some of them had shifted their businesses to Nakonde town, on the Zambia’s side of the border on reason that it was a relief to them due to low taxes they pay as compared to Tanzania.
“You are Tanzanians, do not run away from your country, we shall rectify these problems, but if you’ve got opportunities to invest in zanmbia just do so.
“But do not run away from your country due to problems. Tanzania holds respect by assisting in the liberation of these countries we cannot fail to do justice to our people,” he added.
The Finance and Planning minister also directed Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) officials to introduce the habit of meeting with traders from time to time to solve the challenges they face as well as educating them on the importance of issuing electronic receipts to buyers.
He cautioned traders against using two prices for their sales – selling goods without issuing receipts and/or issuing underpriced receipts saying that these acts were illegal and if nabbed, they would face legal action.
Submitting his report on TRA activities, Songwe Region’s TRA manager John Micah said the authority managed to surpass collection targets.
He said in the FY 2020/21 they collected 92.9bn/-, equivalent to 115 per cent over the targeted amount of 80.3bn/-.
For their part, the traders called on the government to integrate tax issues so that they pay the taxes to one single authority instead of each government institution demanding own taxes and levies.
Dr Nchemba was in Songwe Region to inspect development activities related to his ministry including holding discussions with various traders.