Tanzanian PM urges SADC to harmonize rules for nuclear safety, security

Tanzanian PM urges SADC to harmonize rules for nuclear safety, security

DAR ES SALAAM, (Rahnuma): Tanzanian Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa on Monday urged Southern African Development Community (SADC) member countries to harmonize guidelines for nuclear material safety and security to safeguard human health, environment and ecosystem.

“Transportation of nuclear or other radioactive materials is a global concern and not a one country issue,” said Majaliwa at the opening session of the 2nd Joint Meeting of the SADC Nuclear Regulator Network and the Steering Committee of Project Support to Southern African States in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards in Arusha.

He said there was need to strengthen the nuclear safety and security regulatory frameworks with a view to ensure that the people, the environment and the ecosystem in general, were protected from any harm which may result from mining, milling, processing or transportation of uranium.

Majaliwa said it was on these grounds that Tanzania was fully participating in a project titled “Support to Southern African States in Nuclear Safety and Safeguards.”

It is estimated that Tanzania has huge uranium deposits across the country.

The objective of the meeting is to discuss progress made on the implementation of the Nuclear Safety, Security and Safeguard Project in the SADC region.

In the absence of effective and sustainable regulatory infrastructure to support nuclear safety and security, the benefits associated with the use of nuclear technology and atomic energy were likely to be jeopardized, said Majaliwa.

He said although most of the nuclear regulatory bodies in Africa have established systems for authorization, inspection and enforcement for the control of nuclear and other radioactive materials, there was still a lot to be done to strengthen the national regulatory infrastructures for the transportation of uranium ore concentrate and other radioactive materials.

“These issues range from technology, gaps in the legislations, regulations, guidance and procedures on implementation of regulatory activities in cooperation with other national designated authorities as well as insufficient number of well-trained personnel,” he said.

“The government of Tanzania attaches great importance to ensuring that nuclear technology is promoted and safely utilized for human development,” Majaliwa said.

He said this was done by instituting strict control measures on transportation, storage and utilization of all nuclear materials.

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