Dar es Salaam Special Police Zone Commander Suleiman Kova said the police released them pending clarification from parliament.
He said it was noted the law requires that the PAC chairman was supposed to report the complaint to Speaker of the National Assembly first. The PAC has since written to House Speaker on the need for legal action against TPDC executives.
Attorney General Frederick Werema has been quoted in some quarters as saying there is nothing like a secret contract, especially in public contracting.
The PAC deputy chairman said the committee would ensure action is taken against Prof Muhongo the same way seven ministers including a former finance minister were removed from office in 2012 after the committee uncovered cases of mismanagement.
“Former Tanzania Bureau of Standards director general Charles Ekelege was arrested and is currently serving a one-year sentence after we uncovered mismanagement,” said Mr Filikunjombe.
Lawyers Environmental Action Team director Dr Rugemeleza Nshala said that according to the Constitution, parliament has the mandate to scrutinise and discuss all natural resource contracts entered by investors in the country.
“It should be understood that oil and gas contracts are not formula issues whereby one needs to know how to solve the problem; these are resources belonging to Tanzanians,” Dr Nshala said.
Head of research and investigations at Journalists for Human Rights Elias Mhegera said keeping the contracts a secret would be against international conventions that Tanzania has signed including the Open Government Partnership and the African Peer Review Mechanism.
He said East Africa countries should learn from Mozambique, which has translated gas contracts into vernacular to ensure citizens are well briefed to avert social tensions in future.
Recently, a PSA agreement between the Tanzanian government and Statoil leaked out and sparked a heated debate after it emerged that it did not follow the model PSA set by the government.
PAC chairman Zitto Kabwe said the leaked PSA provided an opportunity to examine whether Tanzania would benefit from its considerable natural gas resources.
The Tanzania Petroleum Development and Exploration Act (1980) permits the government to enter into PSAs with an oil and gas company to explore for, and produce, petroleum.
Although the government said prospectors demanded confidentiality for business purposes, some have said they would make the terms public if the government allows it.
The ruling CCM has also challenged the investors to voluntarily disclose their contracts with the party’s secretary general Abdulrahman Kinana, saying this would promote transparency in the management of natural resources.
Tanzania last year changed the terms for companies signing agreements for exploration and production contracts for crude oil and natural gas. The new model has tougher terms and conditions entailing payment of higher fees by companies.
The 2013 model issued TPDC outlines capital gains tax obligations and a new royalty structure. It requires firms to make a one off payment of $2.5 million on signing of the agreement and pay at least $5 million when production starts.