I have finally gotten to the bottom of this hydro situation (well not me, but I heard the story tonight) here in Mwanza and Tanzania and I'll confess that it has nothing to do with the candle industry, but it does have to do with generators. Throw in some corruption, deceit, and Americans (don't they usually go hand in hand anyways?) and you've got one irritated Canadian in Tanzania.
Long story short is that the Tanzanian government signed a contract deal with an American company that they would supply X amount of generators so that no Tanzanian would be left in the dark (with the lack of rain, the water levels are low and thus not enough moving through the dams to provide power to everyone).
Long story shorter is that the American company wasn't a real company and the Tanzanian government had already paid them billions of Tanzanian Shillings (TSH). When the government found out they were duped and tried to break the contract, the case went to an international court. And guess who won? The Americans. Gotta love the legal system, eh?
Here's the twist:
The Tanzanian government still needed the generator contract and went for another American company. Here's the even bigger twist: it was the same fake company that robbed them before but with a different name.
I hope I have all the details right and if I do the story doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? How would no one in a government not just google the company and see if it was real? The answer: corruption. Clearly someone(s) knew and was being paid off by the American company. To make matters worse, three government officials resigned over the situation (including the Prime Minister). Hmmm, I wonder if anyone of those three got any money?
Both the American company and the Tanzanian government are at fault and who are the biggest losers? The Tanzanian people who are paying for a service they rarely get.
Money is a beautiful thing, ain't it?