President Magufuli fires Home Affairs Minister over $453 Million corruption allegation

The home affairs minister of Tanzania, Kangi Lugola was yesterday Thursday 23rd of January 2020 fired by the no-nonsense Tanzanian leader, President John Magufuli over allegation of misappropriation of the sum of $453 million.

The said sum involves a contract for the purchase of fire fighting and rescue equipment, for the Fire Department under the Ministry of Interior as explained by the government in a statement.
Kangi Lugola had signed a contract with an unnamed Romanian firm without involving the finance ministry or securing parliament’s approval, Magufuli said.

Tanzania’s Home Affairs Minister Kangi Lugola
Fired Tanzanian Minister for Home Affairs, Kangi Lugola (left). Picture: Reuters

Since coming to power in 2015, President John Pombe Magufuli, nicknamed “The Bulldozer”, has taken drastic measures to fight corruption in Tanzania, with the general perception among Tanzanians that the corruption issues that used to plague the country’s government improved drastically over the years has really changed.

Further explaining why he fired the Minister, Pombe Magufuli said “The major issue here is the lack of integrity. They have signed a Memorandum of Understanding but within the contract, it has been stipulated that to terminate the contract, all activities that had been implemented will continue to be implemented.”

Reacting to his unceremonious dismissal, Kangi Lugola said, “The president is the one who appointed me in the cabinet of ministers and he is the one who has relieved me from the cabinet,” he told reporters. “I will continue to support him and his government with due respect.”

“A May 2017 survey (pdf) by Afrobarometer, a research network, shows that over 70% of Tanzanians believe corruption in the country had decreased “somewhat” or “a lot” in the previous year. This is in stark contrast to the results of a similar survey in 2014 when only 13% reported they believed corruption had decreased in the previous year”

The long-ruling CCM party which Magafuli is leading ran almost entirely unopposed in local government polls held on November 24, winning 99% of the polls. Pombe Magufuli is seeking a second term in the 2020 presidential election.

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