Monday, July 10, 2006

Quality Group linked to land grabbing

Quality Group linked to land grabbing

AN internal report from the National Muslims Council of Tanzania (BAKWATA) says Quality Group Limited run by businessman Yusuf Manji tried to grab a prime piece of land from the Council in Dar es Salaam by allegedly perpetrating systematic fraud, conspiracy and corruption. This occurred as a result of deliberate misconduct of a few BAKWATA officials who conspired with Quality Group to illegally transfer ownership of the Council’s plot at suburban Chang’ombe in the city, says the report. BAKWATA had earmarked the land for the construction of a university, but ownership was mysteriously transferred to Quality Group, which had other ideas for the property. The 27-page report written by BAKWATA’s permanent probe committee implicates Mr Manji, who is the CEO of Quality Group, in the alleged conspiracy, saying its property on Plot Number 311/1 Block T at Chang’ombe was fraudulently transferred to Quality Group using forged documents purportedly from Trustees of the Muslim University College. The offices of the Administrator-General in Dar es Salaam roundly dismissed the authenticity of the documents. According to our investigations, the Administrator-General, Ms Christabella Kaisi, declared that the trustees of the Muslim College were not registered with her office and remained unregistered until March, this year. Ms Kaisi had made the declaration after being requested to give expert opinion on the rightful ownership of the plot after Mr Manji’s company claimed ownership. ?Some trustees alleged to have signed the document? but never put pen to paper ... some of the signatures also appeared to have been forged,’’ she attested in a letter to the Commissioner for Land. She added: ’’When I asked the said trustees to come to my office and sign the document in my presence, they never turned up to date.? The report’s annexure shows that Mr Manji had on December 4, 2002, signed a suspect contract with ?the Registered Trustee of Muslim University College? as Director of Quality Group (1999) Limited before the company changed its name to Quality Group Limited and signed an addendum on February 10, 2004. ?The (BAKWATA) committee unearthed the contradictions, conspiracy and fraud and all means of maneuvering on the whole process of transferring the plot ownership to the so called investor -- Quality Group (1999) Limited,’’ says the report. It adds: ’’The plot was intended to build the first Islamic University with the name Millennium University of Tanzania.? Records show that the late Chief Sheikh of BAKWATA, Mufti Hemed Bin Jumaa Bin Hemed, appointed the Board of Trustees of the planned university under the chairmanship of former Planning Minister, Nasoro Malocho, who is now deceased. There are 10 other prominent Muslims, including the current Minister for Foreign Affairs and International Corporation, Dr Asha-Rose Migiro, who were also named on the Board of Trustees. Mr Alnoor Kassum, the late Mr Abdalah Ngororo, Ms Amina Salum Ally, Dr Athumani Mfutakamba, Mr Aunal Mnyuziwala, Prof Hassan Mfaume Mlawa, Mr Musadiq Mohamed Ally, Mr Kassim Jeizan and Mr Salum Abadalah Zagar, were the other trustees. Sources close to the probe committee formed by the current Chief Sheikh, Mufti Issa Shaaban Simba, which compiled the report say Quality Group (1999) Limited had planned to build a school and hospital building on the property. ?The committee was shocked to find out that Quality Group (1999) was assisted by some BAKWATA officials to get the title deed for the plot,? asserts part of the report. The report maintains that the agreement signed by Mr Manji and Mr Ankeet Asar, representing Quality Group (1999) Limited and Alhaj Sefu Moma and Rajabu Mndewa on behalf of BAKWATA Trustees was illegal. ?The agreement is illegal since Mr Mndewa is not a bona fide BAKWATA Trustee. On the other hand the fact that Alhaj Momba agreed to co-sign the document with Mr Mndewa knowing the latter was not a Trustee, is clear evidence of conspiracy and fraud in the matter,’’ says the report. Documents obtained by THISDAY show that Mr Manji personally pushed for a speedy transfer of the ownership of the property and its development under Quality Group. It is only after the new Chief Sheikh, Mufti Simba, moved in to form a probe team to investigate the scandal over BAKWATA’s property at Chang’ombe that the alleged fraud, conspiracy and corruption involving Quality Group was unearthed.

Source:THISDAY 21 JUNE 2006


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