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Mwanza police arrest group of gold smugglers at Kigongo Ferry | Coastweek

Several "world class" gold deposits [left] have already been discovered in the Lake Victoria Goldfields and are at different stages of development. New 250 tons MV. Mwanza ferry [right] carries upto carry 1000 passengers and 36 cars and providing shipping transport services between Kigongo and Busisi in Mwanza recently. PHOTO - EMBASSY OF THE UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA, BERLIN GERMANY. PHOTO – WIKIPEDIA BAIRD MARITIME

Tanzania police arrest group of Mwanza gold smugglers
operating at Kigongo Ferry base on Lake Victoria

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian police said on Sunday they have arrested a group of suspects in connection with the attempted smuggling of 323.6 kilograms of gold out of the country.

On Saturday, police in collaboration with Mwanza regional safety and security committee seized the gold at the city's Kigongo Ferry on the shores of Lake Victoria.

At the same time, Kigongo Ferry Acting Regional Police Commander Advera Bulimba, said the police have launched a manhunt for other suspected smugglers, adding they need to eliminate the syndicate of gold smuggling.

Bulimba said the arrested suspects whose number and names were withheld on investigative reasons were also found in possession of some 300 million Tanzanian shillings (about 130,000 U.S. dollars) which were hidden in the boot of a car.

"We are determined to end mineral smuggling as well as to control all types of crimes.

"We are going to arrest all the culprits involved in this scam," Bulimba told a news conference in the lake side city of Mwanza.

The senior police officer appealed to Mwanza residents to collaborate with the police in the hunt for the remaining suspects.

Mwanza Regional Commissioner John Mongella said the gold smuggling ring was smashed after the police were tipped-off.

Mongella said security has been enhanced to control minerals smuggling in the region.

In December 2017, police in Zanzibar arrested a prominent businessman as he allegedly attempted to smuggle out eight kilograms of gold.

In August 2017, police seized 14 kilograms of diamonds at the Julius Nyerere International Airport in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam as they were about to be smuggled out.

The diamonds were valued at about 29.5 million U.S. dollars.


Tanzania president orders new minerals minister to end gold smuggling

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian President John Magufuli on Wednesday ordered newly appointed Minister for Minerals, Doto Biteko, to put to an end to the smuggling of gold out of the east African nation.

President Magufuli appointed Biteko, a former Deputy Minister for Minerals, on Tuesday, replacing Angellah Kairuki, who was appointed Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office responsible for investment promotion.

Biteko became the third Minister for Minerals appointed by President Magufuli since he took office in November 2015.

Speaking shortly after he had sworn-in Biteko and other senior government officials at State House in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam, Magufuli expressed his dissatisfaction at the supervision of the key mining sector.

A statement issued by the Directorate of Presidential Communication at State House said President Magufuli directed the new Minister for Minerals to work closely with other relevant authorities in establishing gold selling centers in the country.

Magufuli said the Ministry of Minerals should, in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and Planning and the Bank of Tanzania, create centers for selling gold.

The mining sector contributes less than 5 percent of gross domestic product, prompting the government to accuse large-scale mining companies of not paying their fare share of taxes.


Tanzania is very rich in minerals such as gold, diamond, iron, coal, nickel, tanzanite and uranium


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