Symbion Power: Statement in response to Sunday's media reports

WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 30, 2016 – Following today’s news articles in Tanzania, Symbion Power has issued the following statement from the firm’s Washington, DC office to reporters with the aim of correcting the misleading and wholly untrue statements made to the media by the Managing Director of the Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited, Mr. Felchesmi Mramba.

“We continue to be astonished by the revisionist theories of Mr. Mramba who is a high level Tanzania government official and the fact that he uses the media to present them. Apart from a single letter, which he back-dated by 10 days in which he suggested ceasing negotiations with Symbion, he has never discussed any of the issues he is now raising. Shockingly, Mr. Mramba is not being truthful and open. Here are just a few of the facts Mr. Mramba has ignored”:

The Power Purchase Agreement

“There is no question whatsoever that the PPA is a valid and binding document signed by TANESCO’s Managing Director, Mr. Mramba. In signing the PPA, Mr. Mramba was acting with the express written approval the Director General of Energy, who approved the PPA with Symbion by letter dated 4 November 2015. The PPA was also approved by Attorney General Temi by letter dated 4 December 2015. The PPA with Symbion dated 10 December 2015 was signed by Mr. Mramba, whose signature was witnessed by Godson Makia, TANESCO’s Chief Legal Counsel, as well as two senior executives of Symbion.

Symbion’s’ Tanzania CEO was told to collect the fully executed version at 10.30 am from TANESCO Head Office on 10th December. Mr. Mramba and the Legal Counsel of TANESCO, Mr. Godson Makia were at a board of Directors meeting until 11.30 am, and when they came out he was directed to the ground floor to meet Mr. Shirima who took him to the Senior Strategic Manager’s Office to collect the full PPA signed on every page by Mr. Mramba. Symbion signed the dispatch book as confirmation of receipt.

For Mr. Mramba to deny that the PPA he signed and issued to Symbion is invalid is patently dishonest.”

Law Suits

“For five (5) whole years TANESCO has failed to fully pay Symbion and we have been owed between $25 million and $80m dollars at any one time. Those amounts are enormous. Is it therefore surprising to anyone that Symbion itself has debts and cash flow issues in Tanzania. But, for that entire 5-year period we have always kept the lights on, we went ahead and built two (2) emergency plants when Tanzania would have been in darkness due to low water levels at Mtera, Kihansi and Kidatu hydro-power plants. Now, when the dams are finally full in 2016, TANESCO attempts to terminate its agreements.

Indeed, it was the government of President Jakaya Kikwete that supported and encouraged Symbion to acquire the Ubungo power plant and build the two (2) emergency plants in Dodoma and Arusha because the country was in dire circumstances and needed power during that time.

Certain creditors of Symbion decided to take legal action because their patience had run out. Unfortunately, some of them submitted drastically inflated claims and some, such as that of RSS are spurious. Mr. Mramba also mentions a lawsuit for a debt from East African Cables. That company is actually owned by TANESCO, and they sued Symbion for $3m dollars when the debt was actually around $2m dollars. Now, Mr. Mramba uses that as his theory for why TANESCO is concerned about Symbion. TANESCO owed Symbion over $50m dollars at the time, yet they sue Symbion for $3m.

Despite all of this Symbion has never sued TANESCO or switched off the power plant despite the continuous breach of our contract for almost five (5) years. This was simply because the people who suffer when we switch off are the innocent people of Tanzania. We are sure that Mr. Mramba does not suffer because he probably has a diesel generator at home. It is the local population who suffer when the black outs occur.

TANESCO has not paid Symbion anything for 2015 and 2016 but we have continued to operate and give people power. How does Mr. Mramba think Symbion should operate when he does not pay Symbion and is up to two (2) years late when he does?”

Dispute Resolution

“There is a valid, enforceable contract in place and it has a clause in it that sets out how disputes between Symbion and TANESCO must be dealt with. This is for arbitration at the ICC court in Paris.
Despite false statements and retroactive excuses planted in the media by Mr. Mramba and TANESCO, we are still waiting for a reply to a letter we sent to the government almost three (3) weeks ago, on 11thMay. 

We continue to be hopeful that eventually some common sense will prevail because the continued breach of the agreement and the assessment of damages to our reputation as a consequence of the current actions of TANESCO and Mr. Mramba will be extremely expensive for Tanzania. If it eventually transpires that this turns into an international dispute, we look forward to us, TANESCO and government staff explaining these issues under oath to the judges. We will ensure the public is kept informed about this given the fabrications and untruths we are facing today. We have never seen such behavior before.

Instead of misleading the public it is about time Mr. Mramba begins to tell the truth and to start acting in the best interests of the people of Tanzania. He and whoever he is working with should be ashamed for lying to the people of Tanzania that gas fired power from Symbion and Songas is expensive, and that he is relieved to get out of our PPA, when TANESCO is buying fuel for and running an expensive oil fired power plant called IPTL, and when they do not even pay the firms who use cheap gas.

On Mr. Mramba’s own public admission, Symbion and Songas power costs around 8 to 9 cents and TANESCO charge their customers around 14 cents. So they add approximately 5 to 6 cents to the price that we charge them. 

Everyone knows that this is not the case for an oil fired power plant.

Other commentators have hinted at the fact that there is a more sinister side to this than is being presented to the public and we too are investigating the claims about the attempted monopolization of the power sector by some individuals. If that is allowed to happen, Tanzanians will pay dearly for it.”

Julie Foster

US Mobile: +1 917 282 9310


WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 30, 2016 – Kufuatia makala za leo katika vyombo vya Habari nchini Tanzania; Kampuni ya Symbion Power kutoka katika Ofisi yake ya Washington,DC imetoa tamko lifuatalo kwa Waandishi kwa lengo la kusahihisha kauli mbali mbali zilizopindishwa na zisizo na ukweli kutoka kwa Mkurugenzi Mtendaji wa Shirika la Umeme nchini Tanzania Ndugu Felchesmi Mramba

“ Tunaendelea kushangazwa na nadharia za kubadilisha itikadi za Ndugu Mramba ambaye ni Afisa wa kiwango cha Juu katika Serikali na ukweli kwamba anatumia Vyombo vya habari kumuwakilisha. Mbali ya barua ; ambayo kimsingi alibadilisha tarehe ya kuandikwa kwake kwa kuirudisha nyuma kwa siku 10; ndani yake amependekeza usitishwaji wa Majadiliano na Symbion, hajawahi kujadili jambo lolote ambalo kwa hivi sasa anazungumzia. Kwa mshituko mkubwa Ndugu Mramba hakuwa mkweli na muwazi. Hapa chini ni baadhi ya mambo yaliyo ya ukweli:

Makubaliano ya Ununuzi wa Umeme

Kufuatia maombi ya TANESCO, seti (3) za Makubaliano ya Manunuzi wa Umeme ya Miaka 15 yalitiwa sahihi na Mkurugenzi Mtendaji wa Symbion Power na Afisa Fedha Mkuu mnamo tarehe 8 Disemba 2015 katika ofisi za Tanesco yakishuhudiwa na Wafanyakazi wa TANESCO ambao ni Ndugu Hieromini Shirima na Ndugu Kasinda Malale katika ofisi zilizo ghorofa ya Tisa (9). Kila ukurasa wa seti zote 3 za nyaraka ziliwekwa herufi za majina katika mkutano huu.

Mkurugenzi Mkuu wa Symbion Tanzania aliambiwa kuchukua nyaraka ambazo zimekamilika saa nne na nusu asubuhi kutoka Makau Makuu ya Ofisi za TANESCO tarehe 10 Disemba. Ndugu Mramba na Mwanasheria wa TANESCO, Ndugu Godson Makia walikuwa kwenye mkutano wa Bodi ya Wakurugenzi mpaka muda wa saa tano na nusu asubuhi. Na wakati aliporudi alielekezwa kwenye ghorofa ya chini kabisa kukutana na Ndugu Shirima ambaye alimpeleka Ofisi ya Meneja Mwandamizi wa Mipango kwenda kuchukua nyaraka za PPA ambazo zimetiwa sahihi katika kila Kurasa na Ndugu Mramba. Kampuni ya Symbion ilitia sahihi katika kitabu kinachothibitisha upokeaji wa Nyaraka (Dispatch book)

Baadaye na kwa mshangao Mkubwa Ndugu Mramba aliimuita Mkurugenzi wetu nchini Tanznia na kumuomba asimwambie mtu kuwa aliweka sahihi kwenye mkataba na kwamba awe subira kuhusu malipo kwa sababu aliombwa atume Nyaraka za PPA Ikulu. Ndugu Godson Makia alikuwepo kwa wakati huo. Alisema alitishwa na Viongozi na kulazimishwa kutia sahihi kwenye nyaraka inayoonyesha kuwa alikuwa hajatoa Nyaraka za PPA kwa kampuni ya Symbion ambayo alikuwa tayari ameishaipa hizo nyaraka. Ushauri wake ulikuwa kwmba nyaraka za PPA zilikuwa halali lakini tulipaswa kusubiri hati ya malipo kwa vile Serikali ilikuwa ikiipitia. Aliongeza kuwa hili jambo halingechukua muda mrefu na baada ya hapo tutaweza kuchukua malipo yetu. Ndugu Mramba alisimulia hii habari kwa baadhi ya watu wakiwemo Mkurugenzi Mtendaji wa kampuni yetu iliyoko Marekani; Ndugu Paul Hinks. Kampuni ya Symbion ilikuwa nyaraka halali za PPA na tulikuwa tukizalisha Umeme. Ndugu Mramba hakusema sitisha kutoa umeme na hajawahi kufanya hivyo. Alisema kuwa alikuwa ameagizwa na Mheshimiwa Rais wa Tanzania; alisema katika mtazamo wake nyaraka za PPA zilikuwa sawia na faida za Kitaifa na alisema kuwa alimdhirishia hilo kwa kuzingatia na bei nafuu ambazo kampuni ya Symbion inauza umeme wake.

Kampuni ya Symbion ilichukulia kama utaratibu wa kawaida wa Serikali mpya kupitia mikataba yote ya Serikali kwa vile ilikuwa imetajwa kwenye baadhi ya ripoti za vyombo vya habari Vikimnukuu Waziri Mkuu kwamba Makubaliano mengi na Wawekezaji yanapitiwa na Mwanasheria Mkuu wa Serikali ili kuona kama zina maslahi ya Kitaifa. Hatukuwa hata mara moja kufikiria kuwa tutaweza kukumbana na jaribio la upande mmoja kusitisha mkataba miezi sita baadaye. Kama TANESCO ilikuwa ikifikira kuhusu hili na hawakuwahi kufikiria nyaraka za PPA kuwa na tija kwanini waliendelea kuchukua umeme wetu bure? Huu ni ukosefu wa Uaminifu kwa kiwango cha juu.


Kwa miaka mitano (5) TANESCO imeshindwa kuilipa malipo yote Kampuni ya Symbion na tumekuwa tukidai kiasi kati ya Dola za Kimarekani Milioni 25 na Dola za Kimarekani Milioni 80 katika muda wote. Hiki ni kiasi kikubwa cha pesa. Je, Inashangaza kwa yeyote yule kwamba Symbion ina madeni na matatizo ya mzunguko wa fedha nchini Tanzania? Kwa kipindi cha miaka yote mitano (5) tumehakikisha taa zinawaka na tuliweza kusonga mbele zaidi kwa kujenga mitambo miwili ya uzalishaji umeme wa dharura pale ambapo Tanzania ingekuwa kwenye kiza kinene wakati kimo cha Maji katika Mitambo ya Mtera, Kihansi na Kidatu kilipopungua. Hivi sasa ambapo mabawa yote yamejaa mwaka 2016 TANESCO inafanya jaribio la kusitisha Mikataba

Kiukweli ilikuwa ni Serikali ya Rais Jakaya Kikwete iliyounga mkono na kuhamasisha Kampuni ya Symbion kuchukua Mitambo ya Ubungo na kujenga mitambo miwili ya uzalishaji umeme wa dharura Dodoma na Arusha kwa sababu nchi ilikuwa kwenye wakati mgumu na ilihitaji Umeme.

Baadhi ya Washikadau wa Kampuni ya Symbion wameamua kuchukua mkondo wa Kisheria kwa vile wamechoka na wameshindwa kuendelea kuvumilia. Kwa bahati mbaya baadhi yao walitoa madai yaliyotiwa chumvi mfano wale kupitia mtando wa RSS ni ya uongo na si halisi. Ndugu Mramba anataja pia kesi ya deni la Kampuni ya East African Cables. Hiyo kampuni ni mali ya TANESCO na waliishitaki Kampuni ya Symbion kwa deni la dola za kimarekani Milioni 3 wakati ambapo deni halisi lilikuwa Dola za Kimarekani Dola Million 2. Kwa wakati huo TANESCO ilikuwa inadaiwa na Kampuni ya Symbion zaidi ya Dola za Kimarekani Milioni 50 kwa muda ule na bado TANESCO iliishitaki Symbion kwa deni la Dola za Kimarekani milioni 3.

Pamoja na hayo kampuni ya Symbion haijawahi kuishitaki TANESCO wala kuzima Mitambo ya Kuzalisha umeme pamoja na kuwepo kwa ukiukwaji wa mkataba kwa miaka takribani mitano (5). Hii ni kwa sababu watu wanaoumia mitambo ikizimwa ni wa watu wasio na hatia ambao ni Watanzania. Tuna uhakika kuwa Ndugu Mramba hataabiki kwa vile atakuwa na jenerata nyumbani. Ni wenyeji ambao hutaabika na kukatika umeme.

TANESCO haijalipa Kampuni ya Symbion chochote kwa mwaka wa 2015 na 2016 lakini tumeendelea kufanya kazi na kusambaza umeme. Hivi Ndugu Mramba anafikiria Symbion itapaswa kutenda kazi vipi wakati hailipi Symbion na ni tayari miaka miwili imepita pale atakapofanya hivyo?

Utatuzi wa Migogoro

Kuna mkataba halali na unaotekelezeka na ndani yake kuna kipengele ambacho kinaonyeshwa jinsi gani migogoro inapaswa kutatuliwa. Hii ni kwenye usuluhishwi kwenye Mahakama ya ICC mjini Paris.

Pamoja na kauli zisizo za ukweli na zinazoibua visingizio vya zamani ambazo zimepandikizwa kwenye vyombo vya habari na Ndugu Mramba na TANESCO; bado tunasubiri majibu ya barua tuliyotuma kwa Serikali yapata wiki tatu (3) zilizopita, tarehe 11 Mei.

Tunaendelea kutumaini kuwa busara zitatumika kwa sababu kuendelea kukiuka makubaliano na makadilio ya hasara kwa jina la kampuni yetu kama matokeo ya matendo ya sasa ya TANESCO na Ndugu Mramba yatakuwa na gharama kubwa sana kwa Tanzania. Kama itapelekea kuwa yote haya yaendelee kwenye Migogoro ya Kimataifa; tutaangalia mbele yetu, TANESCO na Watendaji wa Serikali wataelezea haya mambo chini ya kiapo mbele ya MaJaji. Tutahakikisha kuwa Uma wa Watanzania unajulishwa kile kinachoendela katika kila kinachoumbwa na uongo uliopo hivi leo. Hatujawahi kuona tabia kama hii.

Badala ya kuudanganya umma wa Watanzania; ifike pahala Ndugu Mramba aanze kusema ukweli na kutenda kwa maslahi ya Umma wa Watanzania. Yeye pamoja na washirika wake wanapaswa kuona aibu kwa kudanganya Watanzania kwamba Umeme unaozalishwa kutokana na Gesi kutoka Symbion na Songas ni aghali na kwamba ataweza kutoka salama kwenye PPA yetu. Na pale TANESCO inanunua mafuta na inaendesha mitambo inayotumia mafuta kuzalisha umeme aghali iitwayo IPTL, na pale waposhindwa kulipa kampuni ambazo zinatumia gesi ya bei nafuu.

Kuhusu Kukiri kwa Ndugu Mramba mbele ya umma, Umeme kutoka Symbion na Songas unagharimu kiasi cha kati ya senti 8 na 9 na TANESCO inatoza wateja wake kiasi cha senti 14; ndio kusema inaongeza karibia kiasi cha senti 5 mpaka 6 kwa bei ambayo tunawatoza
Kila mtu anajua kuwa hii ni tofauti na kile kinachofanyika na Mitambo ya kuzalisha umeme inayotumia mafuta.

Baadhi ya wachangiaji wamegusia ukweli kuwa kuna kilichojificha zaidi ya kile kinasemwa mbele ya Umma na sisi tunachunguza hayo madai kuhusu jaribio la kuwepo mzalishaji mmoja na baadhi ya watu. Kama hii itaruhusiwa kutokea hapa Tanzania, Watanzania ndio watakaolipa gharama kubwa.

Julie Foster
Public Relations

US Mobile: +1 917 282 9310


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