Archive for October, 1985

9. The Political Thought of Julius Nyerere – Cranford Pratt

Professor of Political Science in the University of Toronto, Cranford Pratt was the first Principal of the University College of Tanganyika from 1961 to 1964. In 1981-82 he was a member of the Tanzania Assistance Group (‘Three Wise Men’) to advise the Government and the World Bank on the Tanzanian economy. His book The Critical Phase in Tanzania 1945 to 1968 is a scholarly account of the period.

To apply a famous Shavian aphorism, he who can rule, rules and he who cannot, theorizes thereon; or at least in most cases. However, Julius Nyerere is the exception – a leader who continued to be reflective, philosophic and articulate about his political values and objectives even as he has been engaged fully in the business of ruling. His writings on political issues are therefore of enormous interest and significance.
Yet this is not a good time to attempt an appraisal of Nyerere’s political thought, especially if it is a sympathetic one. No one is in the mood for it. Tanzania’s economy is in disastrous disarray, the capacity of its public service is depleted, its integrity undermined and its morale at a low ebb and there is little confidence remaining in several of the major policies that have been distinguishing features of Tanzanian socialism. The pendulum of international favour has swung away from Nyerere. From the left he is dismissed as a populist whose understanding of the necessity for a vanguard party has been inadequate and who rejected the class struggle. Right-wing observers, for their part, never much liking his thought, now have become increasingly dismissive and sarcastic. All of this has been inevitable. The severe difficulties which have plagued the Tanzanian economy since the late 1970s were bound to generate a tired cynicism toward Nyerere’s more philosophic political reflections. Even the particular sharpness of much western comment could have been foreseen. It is the price which Nyerere is paying (as did Nehru before him) for the telling accuracy over past decades of his criticisms of western policies towards Africa and the Third World. Despite all this, in my judgement, Nyerere’s political thought will be judged in the fulness of time to be amongst the most reflective, insightful and nuanced of all that has been written on African political issues in the first twenty-five years of African political independence.

A re-reading of Nyerere’s major essays suggests that his thought has long been marked by two central features – a deep recognition that Tanzania’s society must be transformed and its economy developed, and a profound commitment to equality. The first of these features he has shared with almost all of the Third World leaders that first came to power in the early years of independence. From Nehru to Nkrumah to Ben Bella to Williams they saw that nothing could be accomplished and rendered secure unless their people were more fully brought into the modern world and more fully enjoyed the improvements in personal welfare that that should entail. No one sought to turn back the clock to pre-colonial institutions and loyalties. Their societies must become productive, stable modern states.

It is the second feature of Nyerere’s political thought, his commitment to equality, that is its special characteristic. The roots of this emphasis on equality can only be surmised. I would expect that his Christian faith and his revulsion from racism and colonialism were centrally important. So also was his perception of what had been his traditional heritage. Nyerere’s equality has never been an equality of initial opportunities for isolated, acquisitive individuals and nuclear families. It is an equality and caring which Nyerere assumed were central qualities of most traditional African societies.

The centrality of his commitment to equality separates him from western liberalism with its primary emphasis on individual liberty and its much weaker acknowledgement of equality as a central political value. In Nyerere’s thought, it is fair to suggest, the emphasis is reversed. Equality is the central value, and the worth of personal liberty is derived from it and is contained within an equal, perhaps greater, intimate involvement with and debt to society. Thus, for example, political participation is to be highly valued but it does not require a system of competitive parties and the full paraphernalia of political liberties which western liberalism rank higher than the achievement of widespread, genuine participation. Nyerere’s central vision for Tanzania is of a united, harmonius society pursuing its economic development in ways that will not generate severe income differentials or stimulate a strong acquisitive materialism and governing itself through representative political institutions in which participation is widespread and meaningful. It can surely be argued that it is, morally and practically, a preferable model or strategy of development for very poor countries than is provided by its two rivals which have, for the moment at least, almost universally swept it or similar strategies aside. The first of these two rivals is a bureaucratic authoritarian capitalist strategy, relying upon a strong government to promote a powerful indigenous capitalism which will produce sufficient general improvements in living standards as to win mass acquiescence without severe repression. The second is the Leninist strategy of an ideological vanguard party what will mobilise the people without severe repression in a sustained and successful developmental effort. Surely there are too few examples of either of these strategies producing sustained growth without severe repression to justify abandoning the search for a more humane alternative.

But do not the severe economic difficulties in Tanzania require an acknowledgement that Nyerere’s egalitarian and participatory development strategy is unworkable utopianism? Two factors suggest this is a faulty conclusion. First, to a very significant degree Tanzania’s difficulties in recent years are due to exogenous factors that cannot be blamed upon her development strategy – the soaring price of petrol, the declining terms of trade, the several years of severe drought and the invasion of north-western Tanzania by Ugandan forces under Idi Amin.

However, very few commentators, Tanzanian or foreign, suggest that these factors provide a total explanation for the present troubles. The interesting question therefore is whether the policy errors that have contributed to the present economic problems are essential and unavoidable aspects of Nyerere’s political thought and the strategy of development that follows from it. I conclude by asking this question of two of the most important of these policy errors.

The first was the major national effort from 1968 to about 1975 to introduce ujamaa socialism in rural Tanzania. This policy was essentially ideological in origin. It was a conclusion indeed that seemed to follow from the two central components of Nyerere’s political thought, its emphasis on development and on equality. Without ujamaa socialism, it was deduced, rural class differences and mounting personal materialist aspirations would destroy the possibility of more harmonious and cooperative patterns. Also, it was assumed that ujamaa socialism would greatly help the introduction of new agricultural technologies and improved farming methods. Thus both development and equality seemed to require the ‘forced march’ to ujamaa socialism which was attempted in the mid-1970s. Both of these arguments flow from Nyerere’s political thought, but neither is essential to it. Socialism is in fact compatible with small-scale peasant agriculture and, even more emphatically, such agriculture can be the basis of a highly productive and comparatively equitable agricultural system. Nyerere and his colleagues had, I believe, begun a serious reappraisal of ujamaa socialism along these lines by 1976.

The second policy error is more serious still because it has had such wide ramifications. Nyerere, it must be conceded, has never adequately recognised the consequences for Tanzania of the scarcity of trained and experienced persons in its civil service; he has not seen that that scarcity imposes very severe constraints on what can be undertaken. Just the reverse, Nyerere hardly ever addressed what was in fact a basic anomaly of the very idea of a socialist strategy of development for a country like Tanzania – that such a strategy assumes the existence of precisely what Tanzania has lacked, a strong, competent and creative public service. Instead a preoccupation with the issue of how to check the emergence of a bureaucratic bourgeoisie, certainly also a real problem, meant that the parallel issue of ensuring a rising level of civil service competency was never given the attention it required.

These are severe criticisms of Nyerere’s political thought, for both these serious policy mistakes flow from important features of that thought. However, the more important question is whether they are inextricably essential to it. If they are, then that thought is profoundly flawed. However, surely they are not. The political ideas of Julius Nyerere can with ease accommodate both the persistence of small-scale peasant agriculture in Tanzania and can also acknowledge and do justice to the severe constraints that are imposed upon a socially responsive regime in Tanzania by the weakness still of its public service.

‘Our strategy has been that of socialism. We have fought against the exploitation of man by man … ‘ … the ratio of urban disposable personal income after tax has changed from an estimated 18.8 to 1 in 1962, through 15.7 to 1 in 1966 and 4.9 to 1 last year. This means that in 1962 the highest income was nearly nineteen times that of the lowest; last year the highest was nearly five times the minimum wage. This is a big step forward.’
Julius Nyerere – Farewell Address to Parliament

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10. Nyerere and the Commonwealth – Shridath Ramphal

Shridath Ramphal became Secretary-General of the Commonwealth in June 1975 after serving as Foreign Minister and Minister for Justice in Guyana. He was a member of the Independent (Brandt) Commission on International Development Issues, 1977-83.

President Nyerere, for long the much-loved doyen of Commonwealth leaders, began to influence the course of the Commonwealth even before he had a place on its councils. On the eve of the Commonwealth summit of March 1961, as leader of the then Tanganyika awaiting its independence in December of that year, he warned that if South Africa remained in the Commonwealth, his country would opt to stay out of it. It is clear that this forthright statement of opposition to apartheid, published in a leading British newspaper, had its impact on the deliberations of that summit. The main outcome of that meeting was the exit of South Africa from the association and the Commonwealth stand has shaped both its own collective personality and the global attitude towards apartheid.

Once Tanzania became a member of the Commonwealth on independence, President Nyerere was equally forthright on other major issues of principle, most notably on the Commonwealth stand towards the Ian Smith regime in Southern Rhodesia, the sale of arms to South Africa and other policies towards South Africa including the issue of Namibia.

On the policies towards the Rhodesian minority regime, President Nyerere also set a precedent which had the effect of strengthening the Commonwealth. When in 1965 his disapproval of British policy towards the Smith regime led him to break off diplomatic relations with Britain, he continued to maintain Tanzania’s Commonwealth links. Had he done otherwise, had he equated Commonwealth links with the British connection and sundered both, the Commonwealth might well have been grievously weakened. It might well have led other countries to turn their backs on the Commonwealth in temporary dissatisfaction with the behaviour of one of its members.

By demonstrating that the Commonwealth was more than bilateral relations with one member but rather a web of relationships with all its members, and by making a distinction between links with the Commonwealth and links with one Commonwealth country, President Nyerere confirmed the essence of the Commonwealth’s contemporary character as a multilateral partnership of equals.

No other leader has had as long a period of active participation in Commonwealth activity as President Julius Nyerere. The length of service has undoubtedly been a factor in his standing with the Commonwealth, but other elements have been of greater significance.

President Nyerere has had the capacity to discern and to articulate the full potential of the Commonwealth, to hold up a vision of what the Commonwealth should stand for, and to spell out what commitment to the Commonwealth requires when it faces key issues. The people of Tanzania have given him the title of Mwalimu or teacher, and his role in the Commonwealth has not been dissimilar. But he has been a teacher without being a pedant, challenging and lively but never self-righteously preachy.

Perhaps it was his skill as a teacher which produced in 1973 a succinct description of the Commonwealth which can hardly be bettered. In President Nyerere’s words, ‘the Commonwealth is people meeting together, consulting, learning from each other, trying to persuade each other and sometimes co-operating with each other, regardless of economics or geography or ideology or religion.’

Not all, perhaps not even most, of his colleagues among Commonwealth leaders have shared his political and economic philosophy, but he has earned respect for his point of view, always put across with a sense of humour, often enlivened by the apposite analogy or the telling statistic, and argued with passion but without arrogance.

He is at his natural best when the Commonwealth meets at the summit; its milieu brings out some of his characteristic attributes: affability, the ability to be critical without being rancourous, to be combative without being abrasive and to stand for principle without being pompous, readiness to reach out to friends and critics alike; relish in the cut and thrust of unscripted discussion. It is not just that his own contributions to the debate are well-reasoned and to the point; it is always clear that he wants to engage others in discussion, not just to have his say.

These qualities are crucial to the success of summitry – to the accommodation and convergence to which summits must aspire if they are to be effective. Few people have contributed as much to the unique style of the Commonwealth summit.

President Nyerere’s contribution to the Commonwealth has been assisted by a keen appreciation of the service it could render. He has seen that the Commonwealth had a distinctive position alongside the global organisation of the United Nations and other organisations like the Non-Aligned Movement, the Group of 77 and the Organisation of African Unity. He has perceived its value as a bridge between Third World countries and developed countries, and worked to enhance its value.

He has recognised that the particular advantage of the Commonwealth was that it brought together countries with divergent interests and viewpoints; he has appreciated the value of consensus as a basis for action.

His message came through with particular force and clarity when he opened the Commonwealth Senior Officials Meeting which Tanzania hosted in 1982 in Arusha. He said:
‘If Commonwealth leaders can reach a consensus, none of us would prevent its expression in action solely because our own ally or friend would have their own reasons for disliking it. Not everyone is equally enthusiastic about any consensus position, we are not all equally free to be in the front line of any consequent action. Wean understand that. But a consensus means that everyone can live with a position; if we have participated in making it, we have some ultimate responsibility to support it domestically and internationally …. Of course we do not reach a consensus on everything we discuss, nor are we likely to do so. And I am not certainly suggesting that any Commonwealth position can or should become legally binding …. But I believe we have been moving in this direction of acting on the basis of consensus when we do reach one. What I am saying amounts to the suggestion that we acknowledge this tendency so that it can become stronger.’

President Nyerere’s remarks made a profound impact on the senior officials – from cabinet offices, the offices of Presidents and Prime Ministers and Foreign Ministries – attending the meeting. They will continue to recall the Commonwealth to recognition of its full potential for service to its members and to the world community.

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11. The Pan-Africanist – Colin Legum

Mr Colin Legum is a former Associate Editor of the Observer and is now editor of the African Contemporary Record. He is the author of Pan-Africanism: a Brief Guide.

Julius Nyerere’s chairmanship of the Organisation of African Unity (OAU) in the culminating year of his presidency of Tanzania was a proper recognition of his contribution to the ideas and development of Pan-Africanism. He assumed the chairmanship at a critical time when the fortunes of the Organisation were at their lowest ebb following the two abortive attempts to hold the 1983 summit in Tripoli and the debilitating internal conflict over the West Sahara, which had largely polarised its fifty member states. OAU summits had virtually been paralysed for several years by the amount of time taken in trying to resolve this single item on the agenda. With the Organisation’s prestige and morale sinking year by year, it had failed to offer positive leadership at a time when the continent’s economic and food situation was deteriorating alarmingly.

Nyerere set himself two major tasks as OAU chairman. The first was to end the paralysing effect of the Sahara conflict even if it meant Morocco’s temporary withdrawal, which he saw as regrettable but necessary. Since well over half the membership had voted for the admission of the Sahara Arab Democratic Republic, he felt that the time had come, not for surgery, but for a period of isolation of the offending member. His second and major aim was to ensure that the 1985 summit meeting would concentrate its attention on the continent’s economic problems. Even though he was heavily engaged in the sensitive arrangements for choosing his successor, he nevertheless made a tremendous personal effort in helping to get the basic economic documents prepared, which were to serve as a basis for decision-making at the July summit.

Despite the great diversity of policies and ideas among the fifty Heads of State, Nyerere’s special contribution on this occasion was to get a consensus on a strategy for rescuing Africa from its predicament – no mean feat! His wider contribution to the OAU was that he lifted it out of its doldrums and gave it a new lease of life.

This was the second time in three years that Nyerere had saved the Organisation. What is not well known is the role he had played in stopping the Libyan-led radicals from agreeing to split the OAU in their frustration at the failure of the second attempt to get a quorum for the aborted Tripoli summit. His combination of wisdom and good humour won the time needed to debate the Organisation’s future in the calmer atmosphere of a venue other than Tripoli.

The names of Nyerere and Nkrumah are inseparably linked as two of the leaders who had helped to plant the seeds of modern Pan-Africanism in the continent in the decade preceding independence. But while the two young men became closely associated and shared the ideal of achieving a United Africa, they disagreed fundamentally over the best ways of achieving this goal. Nyerere was less of a romantic and more of a realist than Nkrumah.

In the 19508 the Pan-African movement had become divided between the so-called radicals, led by Nkrumah who rejected any arragements that did not begin with acceptance of political unification of the independent states, and the functionalists, who accepted the need for a more pragmatic, step-by-step approach. As Nyerere was a leading spokesman for the functionalists, it was inevitable that he should come into conflict with Nkrumah. At first this was a low-key, muted disagreement over means, not aims, but the arguments grew sharper as the ideas for which both men stood came closer to practical implementation.

The first clash came over Nyerere’s sponsorship of the Pan-African Freedom Movement of East, Central and Southern Africa (PAFMECA) which he had helped to launch in 1961. Nkrumah argued that such regional organisations and, indeed, all regional federations were divisive and would impede political unification. Nyerere insisted that federalism and regional organisations were necessary bricks in bulding the structure of a united continent.

At the founding conference of the OAU in May 1963, when Nkrumah passionately insisted on political unification as the first step towards continental unity, Nyerere replied:
‘There will be some who will say that this Charter does not go far enough, or that it is not revolutionary enough. This may be so. But what is going far enough ? No good mason would complain that his first brick did not go far enough. He knows that a first brick will go as far as it can and no farther. He will go on laying brick after brick until the edifice is complete.’

Although Nkrumah reluctantly agreed to sign the OAU Charter, he did not abandon his campaign for political unification despite all the evidence that this idealistic concept was not on the immediate agenda of practical politics. When Nkrumah vigorously pressed his demand for Union Government at the OAU’s second summit meeting in Cairo in 1964, he drew the unusually ascerbic response from Nyerere:
‘At one time I used to think that we all genuinely wanted a continental Government of Africa; that the major difference between us was how to bring it about. I am afraid I am beginning to doubt that earlier assessment of mine. I am becoming increasingly convinced that we are divided between those who genuinely want a continental government and will patiently work for its realisation, removing the obstacles one by one, and those who simply use a phrase “Union Government” for the purposes of propaganda.’

Nyerere has always been careful not to claim too much for the OAU, but at the same time he has also shown impatience with those who seek to minimise its achievements. During a visit to the Ivory Coast in 1968 he admitted that it was true that after the OAU was formed ‘we tried to go too fast’, but he believed that the lesson had been learned.
‘The OAU represents only the first plank of wood across the chasm of disunity; we must guard the plank, but we must gradually strengthen it before we put too much weight upon it.’

On another occasion, in a speech to the Liberian parliament, he deplored the fact that ‘we used the OAU to talk big, as if we imagined that the enemies of free Africa would be frightened by our big words. But we could not follow up that big talk even by small action, so we harmed and discredited the thing we had created.’

Nyerere’s stinging rebukes were not restricted to the ‘big talkers’ in the OAU, but were directed even more against African leaders who used the Organisation’s injunction against interfering in each other’s internal affairs to shut their eyes to abuses of human rights within the member states. This sense of outrage turned to cold anger when the OAU decided to proceed with earlier plans to hold its 1975 summit meeting in Kampala after President Obote’s overthrow. Under the Organisation’s convention, this meant that Idi Amin would automatically become the chairman of the OAU and so the spokesman for Africa. Together with Presidents Samora Machel, Sir Seretse Khama and Kenneth Kaunda, he decided to boycott the meeting. A memorandum giving the reasons for this decision warned that Africa was in danger of becoming unique in its refusal to protest about crimes committed against Africans ‘provided such actions are done by African Leaders and African Governments.’ It went on to say: ‘Tanzania cannot accept the responsibility of participating in the mockery of condemning colonialism, apartheid and fascism in the headquarters of a murderer, an oppressor, a black fascist and a self-confessed admirer of fascism.’

This trenchant onslaught against double standards is characteristic of the moral tone which Nyerere has unfailingly attempted to inject into the public life of his own country as well as of Africa and the wider international society.

Nyerere has also been consistent in pursuing his commitment to Pan-Africanism in one other major respect, by making Tanzania the first of the front-line states to serve as a base for waging the liberation struggles of Southern Africa. When Bel Bella stirred the founding conference of the OAU by calling on Africans to ‘die a little’ for the cause of liberating Africa from colonialism, Nyerere was the first to respond by committing his country and himself to this appeal. He has never weakened in that stand. As the headquarters of the African Liberation Committee, Tanzania has played a crucial role in the successful struggles for the liberation of Mozambique and Rhodesia and in bolstering the freedom fighters of Angola, Namibia and South Africa. In the course of the following passage, Nyerere has perhaps unwittingly written his own epitaph as a PanAfricanist:
‘It is only by agreement that a United Africa can be achieved. The twentieth century is littered with the wrecks of Federations which have failed because they were not based on the will of the people involved, or because they were not strong enough to stand against the prevailing winds of international politics and economics. And it must be quite clear to everyone that the achievement of unity will not of itself solve the problems of Africa. It will merely enable them to be solved by Africa … Despite all the difficulties, Africa must unite. And it must move forward as swiftly as is consistent with safety on this rocky mountain path. The people of Africa today, and particularly its leaders, have a duty to their ancestors and to their descendents, which they must not fail to carry out. The man whose contribution merits a footnote in the history of United Africa will deserve more of the future than he whose obstinacy, fear or pride prevents or delays the day when that history can be written.’

‘The proposal coming before this Summit Meeting is that we should seek an international conference on Africa’s debt problem. But the important thing is that Africa should act in unity in relation to Africa’s creditors. This is essential, for our creditors do act together in the Paris Club and under the leadership of the IMF. Surely, if the strong recognise the need to work together in their dealings with the poor, the latter should not feel ashamed or embarrassed to do the same in their dealings with the rich …. For without unity there is no real survival for Africa.’
Julius Nyerere – 21st Summit Meeting of the Organisation of African Unity, 1985

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12. A World leader – George Ivan Smith

George Ivan Smith was the first Personal Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General in East and Central Africa in 1960 and the first Director of the Regional Office of the United Nations based at first in Dar es Salaam. He served as the UN Representative at the inaugural meeting of the Organisation of African Unity in 1963.

Dar es Salaam was my first base in that vast region. It was a sound base in a restless part of the world in 1961. Kenya and Uganda, still colonies, had deep tribal scars as yet unhealed. Kaunda in Northern Rhodesia and Banda in Nyasaland faced grave uncertainties in the face of the wild cowboy politics of unpredictable Southern Rhodesia.

Nyerere had begun to emerge as an individual of outstanding quality, as a person applying wise political judgement to situations, winning the respect of colonial authorities and by his example encouraging London to accelerate the advance to independence in all of its remaining colonies in Africa. Kenya and Malawi may not realise the extent to which Nyerere’s work helped them more rapidly to become independent, but that hard political fact was made clear to me during my years of intensive diplomatic activity throughout the region. Nyerere never limited his sights to his own national perspectives. He was first a continental man and second an international man, but in all matters he was inspired and guided by the human factor. It was not an ideology. It was a way of life.

Consistent honesty of purpose has made Nyerere an international figure respected very highly in the non-aligned world, but in the corridors of East-West power he was not infrequently viewed with alarm, because he would call a plague on both their houses if they used their power to try to try to deflect his country’s policies down their narrow maze of ideologies. That consistent honesty has, in my opinion, also been a source of his weakness judged in narrow political terms. Consistency is the one aim that professional politicians consistently avoid. To reveal the truth is awkward, as Eden learned at Suez, Krushchev in Cuba, various United States Presidents in Vietnam. Nyerere is no professional politician. He does not have, or use, their tricks. He does not like their tricks being used at the expense of his people. He is therefore an awkward customer to deal with.

I referred to that consistent honesty as a political weakness. That was written tongue in cheek, because I regard it as an internal and external strength. In the short run he may appear to have been cutting off his nose to spite his face, for example, in his break with West Germany when it tried to use him in its political chess game with East Germany, or with Britain when Harold Wilson was ever so slowly dragging his feet along a trail blazed by Ian Smith. In the long run, when relations have settled back to normal as they always do, the foreign powers that were being less than honest have learnt a lesson.

On my return to Dar es Salaam after a visit to the United States I told him that many Washington politicians and commentators were chary of the one-party nature of his state. He replied, ‘how strange, they have a one-party state in the United States.’ That puzzled me, until he added, ‘yes, it is a one-party arrangement, but with typical generosity they have done it twice. The Democrats and the Republicans each represent a cross-section of all the national interests. Take out one or the other of those parties and all the national interests will still find expression. We cannot afford the luxury of two parties. We still do not have enough trained people.’

In such ways he can take the ideological sting from accusations and confront his accusers with reason. Reason baffles many a man and many a nation. It defies romanticism, imperialism, marxism and all the other ‘isms’. Such an august journal as The Times, normally regarded as a journal of record, cannot understand him. He simply does not fit its expected pattern of leadership. And when The Times recounts all of the dreadful things Nyerere is alleged to have done to the economy of his country, and when soon afterwards Nyerere speaks about economic failures in Tanzania and the reasons for them, The Times position is ‘we told you so’. Just as easily and more honestly it could have written, ‘here is an African leader honest enough to come clean about the difficulties, problems and reasons.’ But awkward customers like Nyerere must expect awkward handling, because they are uncomfortable to live with. So it has always been when and where honest men have emerged into history. There are moments when their statements throw a hard light on one’s own behaviour and one wishes that they would just stop rocking the boat. The IMF must have had that feeling often and the OAU at appropriate moments.

I think I first became aware of his rare quality of honest analysis and consistent action soon after Tanganyika’s independence. ‘Uhuru’ to the masses meant a breaking of the colonial bonds and a wave of expected benefits, high wages, good homes, prosperity coming down out of the skies like ‘costly bales’ floating down from heaven to the avid members of the cargo cult in Papua New Guinea. Immediately after independence Nyerere noted with alarm that even his own political party TANU was filled with such false expectations and that politically they could drive the nation to the rocks. He had the courage to resign political leadership, putting the country in the immensely capable hands of Rashidi Kawawa for a year, while he undertook the onerous but essential task of educating the party in the political and economic facts of living.

The next example of courage and sheer honesty was when the students of Tanzania’s first University developed dreams of grandeur. Thinking that they were part of a new privileged class, they decided against national service. Nyerere was furious. Their protest march was diverted to State House. There he told them the truth. They had shown themselves to be irresponsible. They would not go back to the University now. Transport was ready to take them back to their homes and villages. In due course their families were to be asked to decide if they were now fit for the privilege of education. Back they went to learn a hard but essential lesson. Education was the privilege. Only in that sense were they privileged.

By sending them back to the family for judgement Nyerere demonstrated another foundation of his approach to Africa. He built his nation on the foundation of its past and despite the short-term problems since independence it is a nation founded on the rocks of its history and not upon the sands of modern commercialism, corruption, or passing phases of political ideologies which come and go like clerics at funerals. Tapping the wells of African history, harnessing to a nation’s needs the sturdy efforts of men and women honed by tradition and experience, is a great source of Nyerere’s strength and one that outlives the spurts of oil and money that have torn apart the patterns of human society in many parts of the world.

He started in office with a poor country. He leaves office with a poor country in material terms. Yet he leaves with his people having one of the highest literacy rates in the world. He departs without a hint of corruption. He leaves his people free from the tribal dissension which afflicts many other African states. As I watched in Africa Hall on the day the OAU began, there he sat among the Africans of the North, the West and the South. The dream had begun to come true. The continent was swirling into some recognition of its continental self. Beside him was one empty chair. It had been intended to seat his friend Olympio, but his friend had recently been murdered. To me and I feel sure to Nyerere that empty chair was a memorial to the fact that violence should have no place in Africa.

Nyerere has lived by that rule. His only use of arms was to eject Amin’s forces when they invaded his country, harmed his people and did criminal damage. When no international organisation had the guts to brand Amin as an aggressor, Nyerere with deep reluctance used arms to throw the invader back. The most peaceful of all men, he had to fight a war to fight aggression.

Nyerere is one of the most distinguished and remarkable international leaders whom it has been my privilege to meet during some forty years of international work in which I had unique chances to recognise their qualities. In my judgement Nyerere is among the greatest, whose devoted work will reap benefits for generations to come, both in his own country and world-wide; a world leader of prophetic stature.

‘Thirty-six sticks of wood might each break under the weight of a heavy burden; but what if those thirty-six sticks of wood are bound together? Then the burden can be carried safely and every single stick remain whole. These things we know; our people know them in their everyday lives. The leaders of Africa know them too.’
Julius Nyererere – State Visit to Mali, April 1965

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13. Mwalimu Nyerere – Bob Thompson

Dr A. R. Thompson was an Education Officer in Tanganyika between 1957 and 1963, when he served as Headmaster of Malangale Secondary School and subsequently of Bwiru Secondary School. From 1965 to 1967 he was a Lecturer in Education at University College, Dar es Salaam.

‘Rulers of any description cannot hope to lead a people along the path of human development unless their national policies are firmly grounded in a sound political, social and educational philosophy.’ (Plato, The Republic).

Over the last two decades Julius Nyerere has demonstrated to supporters and critics alike that he possesses political and social vision of a clarity and consistency possessed by very few leaders of new countries. Furthermore, he has propounded and exemplified an educational philosophy of like clarity and consistency. Admittedly, the implementation of his personal philosophy has not always followed a consistent path; practical expediency and the evolving circumstances of Tanzania have required a degree of pragmatic adjustment which cannot always have been welcome; but the basic ideas and ideals with which he began his period of leadership still retain their freshness and integrity.

It would be misleading to attempt to view his educational philosophy independently of his political and social principles. On the contrary, the philosophy of ‘Education for Self-reliance’, as it has come to be known following the publication of the document of that title in 1967, cannot be understood and properly interpreted unless it is placed firmly in the context of a whole series of policy statements each bearing the personal stamp of the President concerned with social and economic development and the creation of an egalitarian socialist society.

The Arusha Declaration of 1967 provides some of the keynotes of his thinking.
‘Socialism is a way of life and … can only be built by those who believe in, and themselves practice, the principles of socialism .. . people cannot be developed: they can only develop themselves … a man … develops himself by what he does … by making his own decisions, by increasing his understanding of what he is doing and why, by increasing his own knowledge and ability and by his own participation – as an equal – in the life of the community.’

The development of ‘ujamaa’ as the basis of African socialism would depend upon providing people with opportunities to understand through experiencing in their own lives the meaning and value of socialism, but the imposed transformation of social structures alone would not guarantee the transformation of underlying social attitudes. A prolonged and simultaneous process of education was required. The educational task of political leadership was perhaps more clearly seen by Nyerere than by any other contemporary African leader. It is partly for this reason that among his people he has become known simply as ‘Mwalimu’ – the teacher.

It is not easy for any leader, let alone the leader of a newly independent country struggling with overwhelming problems of poverty, disease, ignorance and national identity, to maintain such a style of leadership. The qualities which so often allow a man to rise above his fellows to a position of leadership are not the qualities most highly valued in a teacher. The temptations to prescribe rather than discuss, to proclaim rather than explain, to dominate rather than inspire, to discourage the expression of reservations and the formulation of alternatives rather than to encourage constructive thinking among one’s followers, to seek immediate and perhaps superficial triumphs rather than persevere with long term fundamental solutions, are very great even for the most idealistic of leaders. Nyerere’s qualities as a leader are much more akin to those of a teacher; his confidence in the rightness of his own philosophy is combined with a high degree of humility and a most unusual capacity for self-criticism, his personal convictions are allied to tolerance, patience and human understanding. As has perceptively been pointed out by a Bristol student, ‘to read his speeches is to realise that he is exercising his political power, not as the unquestioned head of a one-party state, but rather as a teacher encouraging his class to greater efforts.’ (Tetlow, J. G., 1974).

The scholarly reputation which Nyerere has achieved both as a political scientist and as an educationist is happily not based on theoretical abstractions, nor is it expressed in the obscure jargon of the academics. In his writing and speeches he appears always to be conscious that he is speaking to people, who must not just be persuaded blindly to accept, but must be brought to understand what it is that he is saying. Consequently, these pronouncements are characterised by clarity of analysis, a simplicity of expression and a down-to-earth relevance to the lives of his wider audience. One may not always agree with Nyerere, but at least one knows what he is saying. One knows it to be sincere and there is always much to be learned from the sharpness and incisiveness of his intellect. This style of leadership may explain his great confidence in the power of education in developing societies and his fundamental belief in the importance of integrating education and life.

There is no general agreement among educationists as to the significance and validity of the educational principles proclaimed in ‘Education for Self-reliance’ and of the practical measures that have been taken over the years since its publication. Perhaps the most important new idea was that schools should be ‘communities which practice the precept of self-reliance’, becoming ‘economic as well as social and educational communities’. Schools should not merely prepare children for life in their adult communities, but themselves be communities wherein children may learn the art of socialist living by practising it. But schools no matter how organised were unlikely to achieve major attitudinal change unless the wider ‘ujamaa’ communities within which they were set were themselves moving firmly towards socialism. The success of schooling in its essentially supporting role would depend largely upon the success of the ‘ujamaa’ villagisation policy.

Nyerere defined the problem in his speech to the Dag Hammarskjold seminar in 1974 as follows:
‘The facts of life will . . . teach all the pupils that while cooperation may be a religious virtue, the pursuit of self-interest is what determines a man’s status, his income and his power. Two things will have taught this lesson. First, the existence of privilege in the society; and the second, the basis on which selection is made for that privilege.’

Tanzania launched a two-pronged attack, first, upon the existence of privilege in the society through the policies proclaimed in the Arusha Declaration, and secondly, upon the link between educational qualification and social privilege through a series of educational reforms, notably those announced in the Musoma Resolutions of 1974. Through the universalising of terminal primary education, relating access to secondary education to the absorptive capacity of the economy, selection for tertiary education on the basis of political as well as academic criteria, the introduction of national service for all secondary school graduates and substantial curricular reforms involving the incorporation of production activities, it was hoped to transform the schools from instruments confirming and legitimating the injustices and divisions in the society into agencies supportive of the socialist principles of the Tanzanian revolution.

The importance of adult education was also recognised. In dedicating the year 1970 to adult education Nyerere stressed the importance of lifelong education if the Tanzanian people were to shake themselves out of resignation to the kinds of life they had led for centuries past and to learn how to improve their lives and to understand the national policies of socialism and self-reliance. A considerable network of programmes and centres was initiated to mobilise the people in support of government policies through the dissemination of literacy, skill training and political education.

No one, least of all Nyerere, would deny the many setbacks experienced in the implementation of this two-pronged strategy. The fundamental problems of persuading people to limit their aspirations, to accept the self-sacrifice demanded of them, yet of providing them with the motivation to make the socialist society work; of reconciling a developmental and educational approach aimed at human liberation with a bureaucratic pattern of administration; of bringing about a transformation of educational systems at a time when the ‘ujamaa’ society to which they were to relate remained embryonic, all remain unresolved. In recent years the acclaim which greeted the first moves in the Tanzanian revolution has been largely replaced by scepticism and criticism from both left and right. Ignoring the intransigence of the basic problems facing impoverished agricultural societies in the current political and economic climate, those who rushed to acclaim a new hero have too often impatiently rejected both the man and his policies.

But those of us who are ourselves educationists should perhaps remind ourselves that teachers, setting out to transform the attitudes and perceptions of those committed to our charge, can rarely congratulate ourselves on any complete or immediate achievement of these aims. We count our achievements in terms of small shifts, which may not occur until many years later, and must reconcile ourselves to postponing any final verdict. Nyerere’s own statement made in 1973 may still be appropriate today. ‘If we state that some New Jerusalem is where we’re going and then we begin the journey, our friends should not be disappointed when they find that we are still in the desert.’ (Interview, New Internationalist, May 1973). It is still much too early to arrive at any judgement on Nyerere’s achievement. But the unique style of his leadership is unquestionable and it is one which may well fit him in retirement for continuing service to this country.

‘We have learned how to walk by beginning to walk. We have learned how to develop our country by trying to develop it. We never pretended to have any special wisdom about the means of developing our country; we just knew where we were trying to get to. It is not surprising, therefore, that sometimes we made false starts, or mistakes. We have not always foreseen problems of which we needed to be aware. But we have had the courage and the wisdom to do what could be done to correct our mistakes, or deal with the problems as soon as we recognise them. And because of the unity we have built up and maintained despite all the recent hardships, we can be confident that on the basis of our past experience we shall be able further to develop ourselves and our country.’
Julius Nyerere – Farewell Address to Parliament

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14. University Visitor Extraordinary – Reg Honeybone

Professor Honeybone served as Professor of Education at University College, Dar es Salaam between 1963 and 1968. From 1964 to 1968 he was also Vice-Principal. After service in the University of the South Pacific he became Professor of Education in Developing Countries in the Institute of Education, University of London, in 1973 until his retirement in 1978.

Most, perhaps all, of the staff appointed to the University College of Dar es Salaam in the early 1960s were attracted to apply for their posts by the clear and consistent statements made by Julius Nyerere concerning the type of society he hoped to see developing in the newly independent Tanganyika. They accepted and applauded his emphasis on human equality and freedom, freedom from discrimination, freedom from hunger and freedom from ignorance and disease. This emphasis and his subsequent more specific references to the University College, then a part of the University of East Africa, echoed a similar line of thinking. His belief that a free and independent university was an essential element in the preparation of the high level manpower needed for the overall development of the country and his insistence on objective thinking as a basis for national development were concepts readily acceptable to academics trained and accustomed to question their premises with intellectual rigour and objectivity.

This similarity of outlook helped to develop an encouraging rapport between the College staff and the President. The staff, both local and expatriate, accepted that a country such as Tanganyika should not, and could not, afford to maintain a university unless it developed into a ‘committed institution’, committed in general to the task of helping to improve the quality of life of the people of Tanganyika and committed in particular to educating men and women capable of taking leading positions in the process of national development. These men and women would need highly trained minds, a disciplined knowledge of the contemporary world with special reference to East Africa and a maturity of outlook which would enable them to accept the heavy responsibilities of service to a new nation.

It had not escaped the notice of the President, nor that of the College staff, that the beginning of the decade of the 1960s was already showing signs in the western world and in some African countries of growing student protest and unrest. His reaction to potential student problems was far sighted and initially based on moral issues. He frequently reminded the secondary school pupils and the university students that their education was being paid for by people usually much poorer than themselves and that their privileged educational position carried with it heavy responsibilities to the whole nation. In characteristic vein, he compared the then annual per capita income in Tanganyika of £19-6s with the annual cost of about £1,000 of maintaining a university student; and in stronger terms in his preamble to the First Five Year Plan he stated, ‘ … if any of the young men and women who are given education by the people of this Republic adopt attitudes of superiority, or fail to use their knowledge to help the development of this country, then they are betraying our Union.’

The President’s views on the aspirations of the young people were not only strongly and unequivocally expressed, but were deeply held. I recall when the Principal, Cranford Pratt, and I were invited to State House in the very early days of the College for an informal discussion on the concern felt by some Ministers at the rudeness shown to them on various formal visits to secondary schools. Clearly he was demonstrating his own concern at these incidents as examples of ‘attitudes of superiority’, but he was also seeking our views on the state of student opinion in the College and assuring us of his full support in the event of troubles on the campus. In fact staff-student relationships were very close and cordial and were helped in an ironical way at the time of the army mutiny in 1964, when the staff helped to feed and shelter the law students when they were evacuated from their temporary quarters in the TANU building in Dar es Salaam.

In fact this informal discussion at State House, the loan of the TANU building while the permanent College campus was being built on what became known as University Hill and the standing ovation given to the President by a largely university audience at his first public appearance after the meeting all illustrate the close personal contact he had established with the College leaders. This close personal contact had much to do with the development of a cooperative working relationship with ministers and senior civil servants, a relationship marked by mutual respect for independent views and understanding of the aspirations of a newly independent state. There were no directives to the College from the President, or the government ministers. The College was left free to develop its own administrative arrangements and to plan its academic programmes on the twin bases of academic excellence and relevance to East Africa, internally and externally. Probably no other university college in Africa had been founded with a closer agreement on fundamental principles between government and university personnel.

But Julius Nyerere’s influence on the development of the University College went far beyond his sphere as President of Tanganyika (later Tanzania). It proved to be a happy chance that included in the University College (Dar es Salaam) Act 1963 was a rather odd position of Visitor. The duties of the Visitor were not defined, but the person appointed had the right to visit the College whenever he chose and, fortunately, Julius Nyerere when appointed officially as the Visitor chose to visit frequently. He attended the formal occasions at the College, such as the official opening of the College campus on 21st August 1964, and the graduation ceremonies and publicly reaffirmed his support for the College in a series of thought provoking speeches. But it was his more private and initimate visits that provided an opportunity for staff and students to raise questions directly with him and to discuss university and national affairs.

These were splendid occasions. The Visitor would arrive in his usual quiet manner, greet the students most cordially and often open the discussion by some informal remark such as, ‘Well, what do you want to talk about today?’ And the students talked! They talked about politics and the state of the national economy, they asked about the Union with Zanzibar and they quizzed the Visitor about their future job prospects. In fact, such was the air of informality and the good humour generated during the visits that the students felt free to raise any relevant topics that came into their minds and the Visitor did not avoid answering their questions forthrightly, or hesitate to reveal the appallingly difficult decisions which had to be made in establishing practical priorities from the manifold needs of a newly independent country. This was university education at its best, with its intellectual cut and thrust, informed debate and a meeting of eager and rapidly developing minds with the experience and wisdom of a great humanitarian.

But there is one other major happening to which I must refer, which did not occur on any visit to University Hill. The President was well aware from his close contacts with the College that many students were giving of their spare time to help their less fortunate countrymen. Many students were organising and teaching literacy classes for workers on the College campus and the people living in the nearby villages. Others were helping to build a primary school for the local children and others were supporting a blood donor scheme. All these and similar projects were in line with his hopes that students would develop a sense of service for the community as a whole. But not all students were ready to serve and on 22nd October 1966 a minority behaved very irresponsibly on the way to and during a meeting arranged at State House to discuss the introduction of national service. As a result, all the 393 students present at State House, including 320 from the College, were sent home by the President for an indefinite period. In the eyes of most Tanzanians and expatriates these students had adopted ‘attitudes of superiority’, had betrayed the nation and deserved to be punished. But some members of staff, including myself, felt that it was unfair to punish all the students, many of whom had already shown their maturity and readiness to serve and had gone to State House to listen to the President as they had been accustomed to listen to him as Visitor at the College. In no way did we seek to excuse the unruly and extremely hostile behaviour of the ringleaders. It fell to me to call on the President with the Chairman of the College Council and the Principal to review the original incident and its aftermath. It was a long, sober and honest discussion. I came away with very mixed feelings, disappointment that the President had not agreed to let any students return yet, admiration for this honesty in agreeing that he had been unfair to many students, sympathy for him in his anguish at having to stand by his decision for the sake of the future of the nation, knowing that this meant punishing innocent people, and a sense of reassurance in his sympathetic understanding and continued support for the work of the College.

Most of the students sent away in October 1966 were allowed to return to the College at the start of the next academic year in July 1967. The President had made his point. His support was undiminished. The Visitor could resume his visits.

‘Some of our citizens still have large amounts of money spent on their education, while others have none, Those who receive this privilege therefore have a duty to repay the sacrifice which others have made. They are like the man who has been given all the food available in a starving village in order that he may have strength to bring supplies back from a distant place. If he takes this food and does not bring help to his brothers he is a traitor, Similarly, if any of the young men and women who are given education by the people of this Republic adopt attitudes of superiority, or fail to use their knowledge to help the development of this country, then they are betraying our Union’
Julius Nyerere, 12th May 1964

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Quotes throughout the Pamphlet

‘The best thanks I can give to Tanzanians … is to make a new promise. It is that I will continue to work for our country and its people with all my heart and to the best of my ability; and that as an individual and as Chairman of our Party I will give unstinting loyalty, respect and assistance to my successor according to the Constitution of our nation. I shall always continue to work with all my colleagues to build and to consolidate our policy of Socialism and Self-reliance. To pass on the tongs is to sustain and perpetuate the blacksmithery.’ Julius Nyerere – Farewell Address to Parliament

‘The single most important task … which I set out in my inaugural address in December 1962 was that of building a united nation on the basis of human equality and dignity … I believe I can say without hesitation that in this most basic of all our objectives we have, after less than 25 years, great reason for pride. We do have a nation – a united nation. We do have a nation based on the principles of human equality. And we have made great progress towards making that equality a reality.’
Julius Nyerere, Farewell Address to Parliament, 29th July 1985

‘The vital necessity for increasing self-reliance as a method of development as well as an objective of development is now absolutely clear … we now know the bad effects of anger or enthusiasm flaring up and dying out like a flame and which takes no account of the interconnections of different aspects of development . . . we have recognised that it is false economy to ignore the upkeep of investments already made . . . And we have learned also that when you have decided on the top priority of one sector or aspect of development, that has to be given top priority in action and the allocation of resources … In other words, To Plan is To Choose.’
Farewell Address to Parliament

‘The new university graduate … really does not know what it is like to live as a poor peasant . . . he will often find that his parents and relatives support his own conception of his difference and regard it as wrong that he should live and work as the ordinary person he really is … many people in Tanzania have come to regard education as meaning that a man is too precious for the rough and hard life which the masses of our people still live.’
Education for Self-Reliance 1967

‘Our strategy has been that of socialism. We have fought against the exploitation of man by man … ‘ … the ratio of urban disposable personal income after tax has changed from an estimated 18.8 to 1 in 1962, through 15.7 to 1 in 1966 and 4.9 to 1 last year. This means that in 1962 the highest income was nearly nineteen times that of the lowest; last year the highest was nearly five times the minimum wage. This is a big step forward.’
Farewell Address to Parliament

‘The proposal coming before this Summit Meeting is that we should seek an international conference on Africa’s debt problem. But the important thing is that Africa should act in unity in relation to Africa’s creditors. This is essential, for our creditors do act together in the Paris Club and under the leadership of the IMF. Surely, if the strong recognise the need to work together in their dealings with the poor, the latter should not feel ashamed or embarrassed to do the same in their dealings with the rich …. For without unity there is no real survival for Africa.’
21st Summit Meeting of the Organisation of African Unity, 1985

‘Thirty-six sticks of wood might each break under the weight of a heavy burden; but what if those thirty-six sticks of wood are bound together? Then the burden can be carried safely and every single stick remain whole. These things we know; our people know them in their everyday lives. The leaders of Africa know them too.’
State Visit to Mali, April 1965

‘We have learned how to walk by beginning to walk. We have learned how to develop our country by trying to develop it. We never pretended to have any special wisdom about the means of developing our country; we just knew where we were trying to get to. It is not surprising, therefore, that sometimes we made false starts, or mistakes. We have not always foreseen problems of which we needed to be aware. But we have had the courage and the wisdom to do what could be done to correct our mistakes, or deal with the problems as soon as we recognise them. And because of the unity we have built up and maintained despite all the recent hardships, we can be confident that on the basis of our past experience we shall be able further to develop ourselves and our country.’
Farewell Address to Parliament

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ALI HASSAN MWINYI NOMINATED AS NEXT PRESIDENT

The nomination by the National Conference of Tanzania’s ruling party of Mr Ali Hassan Mwinyi as the sole candidate for the Tanzanian Presidential elections caused some surprise abroad as Prime Minister Salim Ahmed Salim and Party Secretary General Rashidi Kawawa were both considered as more likely to succeed President Nyerere. At what is believed to have been a lengthy meeting, Mr Mwinyi was elected by 1731 votes to 14 in a secret ballot.

Mr Mwinyi was born on the mainland in Kisarawe District in 1925, but his family moved to Zanzibar when he was a child. He trained as a teacher and spent periods of study in Newcastle and Hull in the mid-fifties.

From 1963 to 1964, just before the Zanzibar revolution, he was a Permanent Secretary in the Zanzibar Government. Later he filled many other posts in Zanzibar including Minister of Health, Minister of Home Affairs and Minister of state in the Vice-President’s Office. He also spent three years from 1970 in Dar es Salaam as Minister of state in President Nyerere’s Office.

Early last year President Aboud Jumbe of Zanzibar was forced to resign after (according to the Daily Telegraph) a political crisis in which some Zanzibaris were pressing for a better deal for Zanzibar under the Tanzanian Constitution. Mr Mwinyi was elected to the vacant post.

MEDIA REACTIONS

“An honest and capable administrator and diplomat who tempers staunch socialism with deeply held religious beliefs … strongly upholds Nyerere’s brand of Chinese inspired socialism but is no dogmatist.” – Daily Telegraph

“A man of mild manners, enormous personal charm and strong moral convictions, Mwinyi belongs to that almost extinct breed of state managers who squirm at the seamy side of politics and firmly believe that there is another way to run human affairs short of manipulation and spreading fear,” – Africa Events

“Don’t expect many changes in Tanzania’s lacklustre economy when Mr Ali Hassan takes over as President … Mr Mwinyi is Mr Nyerere’s man,” – The Economist

” … it appears that his (Mr Mwinyi’s) peaceful melding of the people of Zanzibar into Mr Nyerere’s system earned him the presidential selection.” – International Herald Tribune

PRIME MINISTER SALIM ON THE NEW LEADERSHIP

The Tanzanian News Agency, Shihata, has published a wide ranging interview with Prime Minister Salim Ahmed Salim.

The following is extracted from the Shihata report.

“The President is not decisive on all issues, but draws his strength from the Party which in turn is in constant consultation with the masses.

The only snag, however, is the general expectancy that the President-elect live up to the charismatic character of President Nyerere, or Mwalimu as he is affectionately known.

Dictatorship is out of question says the Premier, explaining: “That is of no consequence because in this country we are building a tradition of collective responsibility and leadership … It can’t be ruled by one man.”

Rating the electoral procedures so far as having made a good start under “impossible” circumstances, he said this augured well for the CCM’s intention to ensure that leadership does not degenerate into a profession whose change can be enforced only through unorthodox methods “which have become quite rampant in some Third World countries,” or in the event of that leader’s demise.

The interview also had the Premier explaining and reiterating Tanzania’s commitment to socialism because to think otherwise would be tantamount to “indulging in self-hallucinations.” He, however, points out that the country has not really started on its chosen path so to talk about the failure of “Ujamaa” is to talk nonsense.

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THE ELECTION OF A PRESIDENT OF TANZANIA

Some newspapers have tended to mislead their readers by their comments on the election of a President. The Economist’s claim that President-elect Mwinyi is ‘Mr. Nyerere’s man’ and the article heading in the Danish Berlingske Tidende: ‘Nyerere chooses his successor’ give a false impression of the electoral process. The first step is taken by the National Executive of the Party, in which the credentials of the candidates are reviewed in detail and eventually agreement is reached on the name of a single candidate to recommend to the National Conference of the Party. It is for the National Conference to accept or reject this recommendation.

It has been suggested that the members of the National Executive would undoubtedly have endorsed President Nyerere’s preference, thus indeed making the selected candidate ‘Nyerere’s man’. But the proceedings are in private and neither we nor the press can know for certain whether he intervened to give his own view. It is very unlikely that he did. President Nyerere was at the greatest pains to follow the democratic procedure laid down in the Constitution and to ensure the widest possible backing for the chosen candidate. Apart from directing attention to one aspect or other requiring to be considered, he is most unlikely to have tried to influence the outcome. Ali Hassan Mwinyi is known to have been popular in Tanzania and the size of his support in the National Conference, 1,731 to 14, in a body widely representative of opinion and containing all the Members of Parliament and 10 members elected by each of the 104 District Conferences of the Party, seems to bear out this impression.

The name of Ali Hassan Mwinyi now goes to the country on 27th. October on the basis of universal adult suffrage for a yes or no vote; to be elected he must attract yes votes from at least half of those voting. The new President will then be sworn in on 4th. November and on the following day the names of the new cabinet will be announced. Under the 1985 Constitution there will be two Vice-Presidents, the person elected as President of Zanzibar and the person chosen by the President as Prime Minister of the Union. As Mwinyi is from Zanzibar, it follows that in the event of his election the Prime Minister will be the First Vice-President and will be from the mainland. This appears to rule out Salim Ahmed Salim as Prime Minister.

J. Roger Carter

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NEW CURRENCY

In a move to control the black market and bring money back into the official economy the Government announced at the end of July that existing 100 shilling notes would no longer be legal tender. Up to 10,000 shillings, equivalent to about £435 at the official rate of exchange, could be changed into new notes during the five day change-over period. Sums greater than this had to be deposited in a Bank account which would be scrutinised. Baggage of people arriving in Tanzania was carefully searched.

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