Press Kikwete 2010: Mkutano wa Kampeni Nkwenda in Kyerwa District, Kagera - JK: Residence permits for genuine immigrants only

By Patrick Kisembo
25th August 2010
President Jakaya Kikwete has directed local government officials to stop issuing residence permits to illegal immigrants, warning that failure to heed the order would attract drastic disciplinary and legal action.

The ruling CCM presidential candidate sounded the warning when addressing a campaign rally at Nkwenda in the designated Kyerwa District in Kagera Region.

He said it was dangerous and deplorable for the officials to receive bribes from the illegal immigrants and issue them with residence permits without following proper immigration procedures.

“Instead of cutting corners, those illegal migrants should be advised to go to Immigration Department offices, where those eligible will get properly certified documents enabling them to live or work in Tanzania,” stated President Kikwete.

“It should be noted that the Immigration Department is the only government agency authorised to issue residence permits. Not even district commissioners have that mandate,” he added.

He faulted ‘bona fide’ Tanzanian nationals for giving sanctuary to illegal immigrants, saying: “You are the ones continually or routinely receiving these people alongside their livestock.”

He called on local leaders to desist from facilitating the issuance of official documents to illegal immigrants “by being deceived with petty gifts and paltry amounts of money”.

“Tanzania’s territorial borders are wide open for anyone and everyone wanting to cross them so long as existing entry and departure procedures are followed to the letter, otherwise one will qualify as an illegal migrant,” he added.

The CCM flag bearer in the October 31 presidential election went on to advise all illegal immigrants to follow existing procedures when seeking residence permits.

He cited the example of Tanzanians living in Rwanda, where he said they are leading happy lives “chiefly because they have followed all the legal procedures obtained in the country”.

President Kikwete meanwhile announced that Tanzania and Uganda have long seen the need to establish a joint power project at Mrongo-Mkagati, saying that the cordial relations between the two countries enjoyed for decades before the war on dictator Idi Amin in 1978/79 had led to encouraging progress on the project.

Energy and Minerals minister William Ngeleja said $26 million have been set aside for the16MW project, adding that it is now expected to become operational in January next year.

Karagwe CCM secretary Anatoly Shangwe had earlier briefed president Kikwete, who is also the party’s national chairman, on the implementation of the party manifesto.

He cited the poor state of roads and lack of reliable power supply as major problems, adding that illegal migrants kept invading the area with such frequency that they had become a security hazard.

Addressing a campaign rally at Bunazi in Misenyi constituency, the CCM presidential candidate warned against harassment of wananchi by people owning ranches formerly in government hands.

At Kayanga township in Karagwe constituency, he alluded to the massacres in some neighbouring countries and underlined the need for Tanzanians to continue cherishing unity and treating discrimination based on factors like ethnicity, race and religious inclination as anathema.

He is scheduled to address campaign rallies in Ngara District tomorrow.

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