By Emmanuel Onyango
THE Higher Education Students’ Loan Board (HESLB) in Tanzania has said that it will from next week start looking for a total of 119,497 the beneficiaries of its loans in the country who for unknown reasons have failed to reimburse back the money.
Speaking to Azania Post in an interview today (Wednesday Jan 3, 2018) in Dar es Salaam, HELSB’s Executive Director Abdul Razaq Badru that, a secret search for the defaulters will be carried out for a period of three months’ time starting effectively from Monday next week (8th Jan 2018).
The amount totaled Tanzanian 285 billion loaned to them since 1994/1995 financial year about 25 years ago as their loans have matured but have not yet started to pay back.
Either, the loan Board is set to inspect through various respective employers countrywide with intent to know from the list of their workers’ payroll if there are loan beneficiaries among workers who have not yet paid back their loans.
He also said board officials in collaboration with other government organs are in place to ensure an effective implementation of the operation so as to increase monthly collections from an average rate of shillings 13 billion to 17 billion by June 2018.
The full list of employers and that of loan beneficiaries who have violated Higher Education Students’ Loan Board Act Article NO: 178 and failed deliberately to present their workers’ deductions for remission of issued loans for higher education is available at Board’s website titled from today the 3rd of January 2018.
Elaborating more he said every employer is obliged according to the law to present their deductions of the beneficiaries to the Board within 15 days up to the end of this month, some employers have not been doing this an aspect that the Board mounts for their search.
In this operation, Badru said that no one will be spared behind if found guilty of violating the Board’s law.
He assured that, the law under which the Board was established has given them legal mandate to inspect worker’s documentations in search of their loan defaulters and that no one is empowered whatsoever to suppress their operation.
However, the Board has strengthened its move to ensure success in this important operation by stationing its workforce in its zonal offices located in Mwanza, Arusha, Dodoma and Zanzibar, said Badru and added that intensive inspection will be applied in Dar es Salaam city.
Speaking on the status of collection for expired loans, he said that about shillings 85 billion has so far been collected up to Dec ember 2017, whereas the annual collection target for the year ending 30th June 2018 was 130 billion.
“In this operation we have managed to net 26,000 beneficiaries and have started to pay back their loans. This makes the number of payees to be 121,000. In this respect, I sincerely thank all employers who in one way or another have diligently implemented their obligations”, he said.
Concerning with the issuing of students’ loans the MD noted that in this academic year, a total of 122,623 have been given loans Valued at Tshs. 422.4 billion, among them 33,244 are first year who received loans valued at Tshs. 110.3 billion, and other 89,379 students are continuing students who had been given loans valued at Tshs. 312.1 billion.