Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Monday, February 28, 2022.
Zanzibar commits to support Ukrainians stuck in the archipelago
President Hussein Mwinyi of Zanzibar said Monday that his government has received a request for help from about 900 Ukrainians who can no longer stay at the semi-autonomous archipelago because they have run out of money and cannot go back to their country because it is currently at war with Russia.
President Mwinyi made the announcement during his monthly press briefing with journalists following a reporter’s question on what his administration was going to do to help the desperate Ukrainians who originally entered Zanzibar as tourists.
“[The government] has initiated discussions with hoteliers on how we can help these people,” President Mwinyi said. “We will help them until their government is ready to come to their assistance.”
President Mwinyi said that some hoteliers have already started helping the Ukrainians in their hotels by providing them with services without charging them.
He said in turn the government “will consider” hoteliers who provide this support to the Ukrainian nationals when it comes to tax calculations and payments.
“We consider it important to provide support to these people whose compatriots are fleeing Ukraine,” Dr Mwinyi added. “You cannot tell someone to go back to a country where those in the country are leaving.”
The security situation in Ukraine is reported to be deteriorating day after day with the hope of a ceasefire appearing very thin. Thousands of Ukrainians have been reported to seek asylum in neighbouring countries as the crisis is spilling over the country.
Determined to block what he called “NATO’s expansionism” in Eastern Europe, Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the attack against Ukraine, laying the foundation of the ongoing crisis that analysts think can only be resolved through diplomatic means.
Mr Putin orchestrated the attack under the pretext of “maintaining peace” in the Donbas area days after recognizing the independence of two separatist “republics” of Luhansk and Donetsk against the background of global condemnations coupled with sanctions from a number of Western countries.
Tanzania intervenes to stabilize fuel prices as the Russia-Ukraine war rages
Ministry of Energy announced Monday that the government was scrapping the Sh100 levy to each litre of petroleum products to bring relief for local motorists as petroleum price is set to increase given the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.
According to a statement released yesterday, the changes will start effectively from Wednesday, March 2, 2022, and will be implemented for the next three months.
The government said it would continue to monitor the movements at the world market while adjusting local prices to affordable levels.
“Though this decision would reduce government collections by Sh30 billion monthly, the state saw it was significant to protect its local consumers of the petroleum products from the fluctuations in the global markets,” the statement said.
This is not the first time the government intervene to stabilize petroleum prices.
On October 5, 2021, for instance, it reduced fees and charges of government institutions imposed on petroleum products by Sh29.38 per litre in petrol prices, Sh30.05 a litre on diesel prices and Sh26.99 a litre on kerosene prices.
In December, the government also suspended the collection of the petroleum fees of Sh100 a litre on petrol and diesel.
Lightning kills seven in Rukwa, leaving 14 others injured
Rukwa regional police commander William Mwampaghale told journalists over the weekend that seven people from the Nkasi district in the Mara region died on the spot while fourteen others were seriously injured after being struck by lightning on Saturday.
The victims were working on a farm field as casual labourers in Milundikwa Village at Nkandasi Ward, the police said. The lightning strike also killed six cows that were grazing.
Mwampaghale was quoted as saying that all 14 wounded patients were rushed to Luwa – JKT Health facility at Nkendo Ward in Sumbawanga Municipality.
Nkandasi Ward Executive Officer (WEO) Mr Given Kisantola said on that day all 21 people were busy working on a farm field as casual labourers at Milundikwa village when the incident occurred.
“When it started to rain all 21 people were busy planting beans at the farm,” the government-owned Daily News newspaper quoted him as saying. “They took refuge into the farm hut and suddenly lightning struck them.”
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