Tanzania maintain its new map dividing Lake Malawi is legal

The Tanzanian government has said  the current move it has taken of reclaiming the portion of Lake Malawi is not taking advantage that Malawi has a female president, Mrs Joyce Banda

Speaking during the Day Break Malawi program on Capital Radio on Wednesday, Tanzanian High Commissioner to Malawi, Patrick Tsere said this issue is not a new one as it started a long time ago.

“ I think I been have saying this in the past that the issue started in 2005 when we received a letter from the late president [ Bingu wa Mutharika]and we have been so respectiful to Malawian presidents, please,” he said.

Tsere said Tanzanian government has drawn a new map to accommodate the four new regions and 19 districts.

Tsere: new map legally binding

“In fact this is the same old map but it might seem new because the new regions and district we have included,” Tsere also said the act has nothing to do with provocation.

“This is not provocations. We are in good relationship with Malawi government and am enjoying staying in Malawi,” he said.

He however refused to comment on what Tanzania would do if the issue was in Tanzanians court.

Malawi wants Tanzania to withdraw a map that shows the border line passing in the middle of the disputed lake.

Lake Malawi, known as Lake Nyasa in Tanzania, is Africa’s third largest lake and it is thought to sit over highly coveted oil and gas reserves.

Malawi claims sovereignty over the entirety of the lake while Tanzania says it is entitled to 50 percent of it.

The  dispute comes as a British company Surestream Petroleum is conducting Environmental Impact Assessment on the lake after Malawi government awarded it a contract last year to start gas and oil exploration there.

Gas finds off Tanzania and Mozambique have led to predictions the region could become the third largest exporter of natural gas on the planet.

 

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