- Published on Wednesday, 01 August 2012 17:43
- Written by FB ATTORNEYS
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I am an American and currently in Tanzania visiting my uncle who is serving a four year sentence in one of Tanzania’s prisons after being convicted of an offence. My uncle is an aged person with multiple health problems and our family feels really sorry for him. Is there any possibility to transfer him to his home country so that the family may be closer to him and console him after completion of his sentence? If yes, then how do we achieve this?
There is a law, Act No 10 of 2004 - Transfer of Prisoners Act, providing for the transfer of prisoners between the United Republic of Tanzania and other countries for the purpose of enforcing sentences of imprisonment passed upon them and other matters connected therewith. However for this to be possible it is a pre requisite that there must be in existence an agreement between Tanzania and your country on this aspect, and further that the minister responsible in Tanzania must have published in the Gazette that the Transfer of Prisoners Act shall apply in case of that country subject to such conditions, exceptions and orders as may be specified.
You have not informed us of your uncle’s citizenship to enable us check if there is such an arrangement between his home country and Tanzania. If there is such an agreement between his home country and Tanzania, then an appropriate authority responsible for the transfer of prisoners in that country, provided the home country has agreed, should request the Tanzanian minister responsible for matters relating to prisoners for such a transfer.
The minister shall after consultation with the Attorney General decide to agree to the transfer or not. You should also be mindful that in addition to other documents that may be requested by Tanzania, it is essential for your home country to submit a certified copy of judgment or statement of the facts upon which the conviction and sentence were passed. We suggest you get the services of a local lawyer to guide you on this.
I supplied to the Government various items to be used in certain operations. It has been two years and there is no sign of payment. My lawyers say it is not a good idea to sue as the debt is not recoverable and the procedure to sue the government is lengthy. How do I recover my funds?
As in any other country, suing the government is possible and we don’t understand why you have been told that the debt is not recoverable and procedure lengthy. What perhaps your lawyers mean is that enforcing the judgment might be challenging.
The Government Proceedings Act makes it very clear in section 6(1) that notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, civil proceedings may be instituted against the Government subject to the following provisions. (2) No suit against the Government shall be instituted, and heard unless the claimant previously submits to the Government Minister, Department or officer concerned a notice of not less than ninety days of his intention to sue the Government, specifying the basis of his claim against the Government, and he shall send a copy of his claim to the Attorney-General.
(3) All suits against the Government shall, after the expiry of the notice be brought against the Attorney-General, and a copy of the plaint shall be served upon the Government Ministry, Department or Officer that is alleged to have committed the civil wrong on which the civil suit is based.
(4) All suits against the Government shall be instituted in the High Court by delivering in the Registry of the High Court within the area where the claim arose. (5) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (3), the Attorney - General may, unless another person ought to be sued, be sued or be joined as a co-defendant, in proceedings against the Government.
From the above, you can see that a mandatory notice of 90 days must be given to the Government before you can commence your suit. With this additional information, you might want to contact your lawyers again.
Small factory, big environmental issue
I am small factory owner employing many people. Recently I got a letter from the local government authority that I must install certain expensive machines to reduce some liquid waste that my factory produces. The cost of such a machine is more than the cost of replacing some of my machines that perform the company’s core activities. I always thought that the environmental rules applied to the big factories and mining companies that are the biggest polluters. Please guide me.
We are not sure of many comments and suggestions in your question. First you claim to be a small factory owner. We are unsure as to what you mean by that. Small in terms of what? Just so that you know the law does not distinguish between a small and large factory. The fact that you are small or large does not change the fact that you are polluting. You also seem to be under the wrong notion that by employing many people, your ‘small’ factory can get away with this liquid waste that you are producing.
That is also incorrect. A polluter is a polluter and the National Environmental Act comes to the protection of the citizens by strictly enforcing this. You have mentioned that the cost of machinery to assist reduce the polluting liquids is more than the cost of machines in your factory.
That does not give you a licence to continue polluting. Nowhere in your question have you tried to defend your position in that maybe you are not polluting. All signs are there that you are. Please be informed that such pollution is a criminal offence and apart from being fined, the law provides for imprisonment. It is not unwise to get the assistance of an environmental expert and a lawyer to guide you further.