‘Le socialisme Tanzanien existe-t-il toujours?’ So began a recent article in ‘Jeune Afrique’, the very widely read weekly which circulates in Francophone Africa. We raised the same issue in our January Bulletin under the heading ‘Socialism and Capitalism’ in quoting a speech by Abdulrahman Mohamed Babu, a former Tanzanian cabinet minister. The same issue has been raised in Britain during President Nyerere’s recent visit on radio and television and in the press. It is also being widely discussed in Tanzania itself, particularly amongst CCM party leaders. For this reason we have two articles on the subject in this issue. The first, by quoting extracts from articles and speeches, explains how the issue arose and what Tanzania’s leaders are saying about it. The second is a detailed review of a broadcast on BBC’s Radio 4 entitled ‘The Tanzanian Experiment’ kindly prepared for us by Dr. Harry Goulbourne of the Centre for Caribbean Studies at the University of Warwick. We hope that these articles will stimulate discussion amongst readers and that they will write and let us know their reactions.
In the last issue we featured a speech by President Nyerere at the Sokoine University of Agriculture. Since then three members of staff from the University have been in the United Kingdom- Ndugu V.L. Kyelule, Head of the Development Studies Unit, Dr. M.E. Mlambiti, Head of the Rural Economy Department and Ndugu J. Ngasongwa, Senior Lecturer in Development Studies. I also met briefly Professor H. Othman, Director of the Institute of Development Studies at the University of Dar es Salaam when he was over here. Tanzania has been something of a pioneer in insisting that all university students should take Development Studies regardless of academic discipline. It is apparent, however, from my discussions with the Sokoine staff, now enjoying their university’s newly gained autonomy, that much serious thinking is going on about both the teaching and research activities in Development Studies at Sokoine. There is a growing feeling that the subject should be less ideologically oriented and should be restructured to give it a broader perspective, This is the reason why all three Sokoine visitors have been to the Institute of Development Studies at Sussex University and the School of Development Studies in East Anglia. We hope to keep you informed of any progress.
Sokoine’s contacts with the United Kingdom are likely to be further strengthened by a link arrangement with Wye College of London University now being discussed. It will cover exchanges of staff, post-graduate training of Sokoine University staff at Wye and joint research activities particularly in the areas of food production, farming systems studies and the role of efficient marketing systems and cooperative societies in agricultural development.
The main event of interest since our last issue has been the visit to Britain of President Nyerere from 17th. to 21st. March, 1985. President Nyerere’s two main speeches concentrated on the debt problem of the Third World and the International Monetary Fund. A note on the part of the Royal Commonwealth Society speech which dealt specifically with ‘Tanzania is given later in this issue.
For those of us who were fortunate enough to be there, the highlight of the visit was the warm, friendly and, by the normal standards of Britain- Tanzania Society meetings, massive reception given by the Society with considerable help from the Tanzania High Commission. Perhaps the most poignant moment of all was the reading by Randal Sadleir of part of Mark Anthonyts speech in praise of Brutus from Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar in a translation made by the President himself:
…kwa nia safi kabisa,
Na kwa faida ya umma, akawa mmoja wao.
Alikuwa mwadilifu mwenye maisha manana;
Na vipaji vilikuwa vimechanganyika kwake,
Miungu wangaliweza kusimama na kusema,
Kwa ulimwengu mzima, ‘Huyu alikuwa mtu!’
It seemed very appropriate1
Many of our readers must have personal recollections of President Nyerere. On the occasion of his retirement from the presidency we have decided to produce a special issue in October, 1985, on the Nyerere years, Whether you knew him as President, politician, teacher, statesman, farmer, orator, poet, or just as a man, we would like to hear from you before 15th. August, 1985. Please send your contributions to David Brewin, Editor, 14B, Westbourne Grove Terrace, London W2 5SD, or by telephone to 01-727-1755. As we have limited space and must achieve a balance we may not be able to print all the contributions sent to us, but I hope this will not discourage you from sending me your contribution.