Tanzania Case On Hunting Blocks Opposed By AG

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    Tanzania Case On Hunting Blocks Opposed By AG

    THE Attorney General (AG) has asked the High Court to dismiss with costs an application lodged by a hunting company, Foa Adventure Safaris, challenging an alleged controversial allocation of four hunting blocks by the minister for tourism and natural resources.

    In a notice of preliminary objection filed at the court in Dar es Salaam on Monday together with counter affidavits, the AG who is appearing for the minister in the matter, has advanced four grounds to oppose hearing of the application.

    The AG argues that the applicant (Foa Company) lacks a cause of action against the respondents and has no locus to prosecute the matter. The AG also states that the application is hopelessly time-barred and the affidavit in support of the matter is incurably defective.

    Four other respondents in the case, Bushman Hunting Safaris, Merera Lodges and Tours, Mwanauta Company and Go Wild Hunting, are also opposed to the hearing of the matter, citing almost similar grounds of objection as the AG.

    Principal State Attorney Pius Mboya is appearing in the matter for the AG and the minister, while advocates Mabere Marando and Semu Anney from Marando and Mnyele and Makoa Law Chambers, respectively, are representing the four respondents in the case being presided over by Judge Zainabu Mruke.

    In the case, Foa Adventure Safaris is challenging the minister's move to deny them an opportunity to renew ownership of four hunting blocks and allocating the same to the respondents. Already the applicant has vacated possession of the blocks which have been taken over by the respondents.

    The hunting blocks in question are Rungwa Mwamagembe Game Reserve, Luanda Mkwambi Game Controlled Area (North), Rungwa Rungwa Game Reserve (East) and Rungwa Rungwa Game Reserve (West).

    The company is therefore asking the court to issue an order compelling the minister to rescind his decision and review the application submitted to him by the applicants. According to the application, the company made an application for administrative review following the decision by the minister not to allocate to him the said hunting blocks and for his failure to follow the legal procedure in allocating hunting blocks.

    According to the law, a party aggrieved by a decision by the minister in the allocation of hunting blocks may seek a court order for the minister to conduct an administrative review of his decision. On October 26, 2011, the applicant lodged an application for the minister to undertake an administrative review of his decision.

    However, according to the applicant, the minister has so far failed to make a review of his decision. Failure by the minister to make the review has left the applicant at a disadvantage as they are not sure of their position in respect of the said hunting blocks, whose licences expired at the end of March 2013 and is unable to pursue further remedies provided by the law to challenge the allocation process of the said blocks, including appeals to the court.

    The last application for administrative review, the company says, was submitted by the applicant on November 15, last year and to date the minister has failed to make a decision, notwithstanding the applicant's reminders, which is inconsistent with the legal principles of good governance and natural justice.



    Source: allAfrica.com
     

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