simbadeo2000

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Agrisol … Tanzania ‘tunauza’ nchi?

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The above two images show sections of Mpanda District in Katavi Region. The question is: Is this part of our land that they want to ‘grab’ from us?

Agrisol’s $100 million land deal opposed by US environment group

By KEVIN KELLEY (email the author)

A leading US environmental group is opposing the planned purchase of 325,000 hectares of land in Tanzania by an American company.

The Sierra Club, which says it has one million supporters in the United States and Canada, is urging Tanzania Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda to “step away from this ill-advised project.”

Tanzania’s parliament is debating the government’s willingness to lease the land in the Rukwa and Kigoma regions to Agrisol Energy Tanzania Ltd, which is backed by a consortium of US investors and is part of an agribusiness enterprise based in the state of Iowa. Agrisol Tanzania is also partnered with Serengeti Advisers Ltd, a Tanzania investment and consulting firm led by Iddi Simba and Bertram Eyakuze.

Opponents charge that the deal amounts to a “land grab” that would result in the displacement of 160,000 refugees from Burundi, some of whom have lived on the land for 40 years. “Very productive smallholders” would be replaced by “large mechanised farms” growing genetically modified maize to be used as biofuels in developed countries, says Anuradha Mittal, a researcher with the California-based Oakland Institute.

Agrisol says its $100 million investment over the next 10 years is intended to produce staple crops and livestock that “will help stabilise local food supplies, create jobs and economic opportunity for local populations, spur investment in local infrastructure improvements.”

The company denies that it plans to grow crops for biofuel production. It adds, however, that “as crop production increases over time, excess crops that are not needed for valued-added food products could become available for other uses.”

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As part of its current negotiations with Tanzanian officials, Agrisol is seeking a change in regulations to allow it to grow GMO maize, Ms Mittal says.

Agrisol says only that it intends to introduce “modern seeds” to Tanzania. Tax holidays for the investors, repatriation of dollars out of Tanzania and a waiver of duties on project-related imports are also being negotiated, the Oakland Institute says.

Mr Simba, the founding director general of the East African Development Bank, defended the deal in a July letter, saying it is “consistent with the vision of President Jakaya Kikwete to transform the country’s economy through significant, long-term investment in agriculture. The ambitious Kilimo Kwanza strategy is central to Agrisol’s mission to forge a partnership with the government and with farmers to ensure that Tanzania rises above subsistence farming,” Mr Simba added.

Source: http://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/Agrisol++100+million+land+deal+opposed+by+US+environment/-/2558/1280222/-/x7lrs6z/-/

Wapendwa wasomaji wa blogu hii. Nilikutana na makala hiyo hapo juu leo kupitia Pambazuka News. Ni habari nzito. Nimeiweka hapa ili kila mmoja aitafakari kwa namna anavyoweza. Tumekuwa tukisikia kuhusu ‘land grabbing’ (uchukuaji/uporaji ardhi) ambao umekuwa ukitokea katika bara la Afrika. Jambo hili linafanywa — si hasa na serikali za mataifa ya nje moja kwa moja bali na makampuni au taasisi fulani. Lakini vyovyote vile iwavyo, wanapokuwa hawa ‘wawekezaji’ mara nyingi wanaoishia kuumia ni wale ambao wamekuwa wakiishi katika ardhi hiyo. Hebu fikiria, eti wanataka kuwekeza kiasi cha dola za Marekani milioni 100 (Tshs. 200 bilioni). Sawa hii inaweza kuwa fedha nyingi katika maandishi na katika matamshi. Lakini katika ulimwengu wa sasa hii ni fedha kiduchu na wala hailingani hata chembe na thamani ya ardhi wanayotaka kuichukua ili wafanye uzalishaji wanaoujua wenyewe (wa GMOs).

Historia hutufundisha mambo. Mtakumbuka kwamba si zaidi ya miaka 150 iliyopita, yalikuja makampuni barani Afrika: The German East Africa, The British East Africa … Yaliwaingiza mkenge waliokuwa viongozi wetu wakati ule. Viongozi wakatia saini mikataba iliyojaa ulaghai. Wale waliogoma kutia saini walinyongwa au kupigwa vita. Matokeo yake tunayafahamu sote. Tuligeuzwa kuwa makoloni na kujikuta tukitawaliwa kinyemela na wageni. Hivi, leo hii tofauti yake ni nini?

Pengine wengine watasema, hebu wananchi nao washirikishwe, waulizwe nini wanataka. Well, hii itakuwa hatua muhimu, lakini ni nani ajuaye kama matokeo ya utafiti wa namna hiyo hayatachezewa ili tu ‘watu fulani wapate aina ile tu ya matokeo wanayoitaka’.

Chonde chonde, ardhi tuliyorithi kutoka kwa mababu zetu ni ardhi yetu. Msituingize kwenye mikataba isiyo na kichwa wala miguu. Msituingize kwenye makubaliano yatakayoishia kutugeuza watumwa na watwana katika ardhi yetu wenyewe. Hatutaki kuwa vibarua. Kama mwekezaji anakuja na pesa yake tuingie ubia, ubia utakaojali hadhi yetu kama binadamu, itakayotufanya tuwe na kauli zaidi juu ya nini kinachoendelea. Mgawanyo uwe asilimia 75 kwa wazawa na 25 kwa wawekezaji, kwa sababu thamani ya ardhi huwezi kuilinganisha na kitu chochote duniani … ni sawasawa na uhai wa binadamu … huwezi kuupigia hesabu kwa viwango vya fedha.

Tujadili na tuungane na wale wanaopinga mpango huu. Nawakilisha.

Written by simbadeo

December 5, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Posted in Siasa na jamii

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