Monday, September 22, 2014

State assures Mbagala bomb victims compensation payments

At last the government has agreed to settle down once and for all the long standing compensation payments due for the Mbagala victims whose household properties were destroyed by bomb blasts which occurred in the area in April 2009 over five years ago, it has been learnt.  The chairperson of the committee representing bomb blast victims’ group, Steven Gimonge made the revelation on Saturday last week in Dar es Salaam at a public meeting whereby his committee members convened at Mbagala Kuu suburb on the outskirts of Dar es Salaam city. In his speech, Gimonge assured fellow victims that, among the compensation payments to be effected for the victims will also include payments of medical treatment which the government had promised to compensate those who sustained body disorder as a result of the blast. However, he cautioned those to be considered for payments would be victims who underwent medical treatments immediately, and urged them to get ready with their medical prescriptions which would be thoroughly checked in order to confirm their attendances. Gimonge was briefing the group what had transpired one week after media reported their claims during which the group had gathered to raise up their voices after a long silence by the government despite of the promises to review the mode of compensation for the victim since they lodged their claims to President Jakaya Kikwete in early 2013. “Following an exclusive report of our grievances as reported by the media, officials from the State House called me in response and has assured to settle down the matter after three weeks’ time from now”, he said urging fellow members to calm and draw their patience. 

The chairperson of the committee representing bomb blast victims’ group at Mbagala Kuu , Steven Gimonge addressing fellow victims on Saturday last week.

 Last Saturday group members opened up their grievances in a three hour meeting to remind the government to execute their prompt additional payments in order to clear their worries despite several promises that it would do. About 1,361 group members are in demand of additional payments after what was paid to them earlier was noted to be too small compared to the value of loss of household properties including their houses that got cracked as a result of such blasts, hence had raised concerns over the delays caused. In their previous meeting, Gimonge substantiated the miserable payments settled by cheques that do not exceed Sh. 2,000/- which of course is not enough to cover their treatment costs. They are also suspicious for such payment cheques might have been forged. An example of the original cheque No. 452163 issued on 28th August 2012 by the Bank of Tanzania stating the sum of 1,950 paid to one victim Said Omary Mbonde, that the Guardian came across is a typical example. The owner has never gone to the bank to withdraw money for he feels shy to do so. He said during an exclusive interview that, how could he go for withdrawal and yet the money written is like his transport of going and return back to his residence. “This is a shame indeed” he asserted. Among other victims interviewed last week expressed their disappointment saying that are experiencing hard time to make their life through for having nothing to sustain their life with as they have been infected by diseases which needs money for treatment. Two weeks ago, the Secretary to President Kikwete Prosper Mbena said that, the State House received the names of the victims but the same were yet to reach the President. Mbena was quoted exclusively by this paper and noted that, they were still verifying the names to satisfy themselves as to who deserves what as the names are too many. “After the evaluation, it is when the names will be taken to the President,” he added. “The State House has received the victims’ names but they have not been forwarded to the President. We shall forward them when the procedures are completed,” Mbena was quoted as saying.

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