THE POLITICAL PLIGHT OF ZANZIBAR. Ed: T L Mwaliyamkono TEMA publishers Co. Ltd. 2000. 255 pages.

At the annual Consultative Group meeting in Dar es Salaam in May almost every donor delegate stressed the need for the Union government to contain the Zanzibar political situation which they said was tarnishing Tanzania’s image and reputation. President Mkapa responded by cautioning the donor community against patronising the situation in Zanzibar. He advised them to dig deeper into history before making a judgement. This timely and revealing book, which was launched in June this year, could serve the purpose well as it does delve deeply into the history of the Isles and goes a long way to explaining its present political plight.

At the launch, Executive Director of the Eastern and Southern Africa Universities Research Programme (ESAURP) Prof Maliyamkono said that political hostilities go back to the colonial era. “People in Zanzibar are born in politics as they are born like Christians or Moslems” he said. Post-independence governments up to 1995 did almost nothing successfully to unify the people. He went further (some might say too far) by saying that a coalition government (as proposed by the CUF party in the present elections) could not be established in Zanzibar because of fundamental differences, particularly regarding the 1964 revolution. CCM members considered themselves to be pure Africans and had favoured the violent revolution; CUF supporters who were Africans/Shirazis and Arabs, had not supported the revolution. These groupings were almost exactly the same as in the three elections held in Zanzibar in 1961 and 1963. There had been no change. However, neither CUF nor CCM had an absolute majority in the Isles; the election would be decided by the 20% best described as neutral.

The opinion survey on which the book was based was conducted by 75 Tanzanian scholars who interviewed 7,500 Zanzibaris. It reveals people’s views on such issues as ethnicity, race, religion, political affiliation and relations between Unguja and Pemba. Chapters by Professors J Mwimbiliza and D R Mukangara explain how and why these views were formed historically; Judge Ramadhan goes into the legal framework; C A Rugalabamu explains why the 1955 elections were so chaotic; and, Prof Mwaliyamkono delves into the controversial issue of the extent to which Zanzibaris are subsidised by mainland Tanzanians.

This is an excellent book packed with information and data which enables the layman to begin to understand the extraordinary complexity of Zanzibar politics -DRB.

CONFLICT AND GROWTH IN AFRICA. VOL. 2. KENYA, TANZANIA AND UGANDA. J Klugman, B Neyapati and F Stewart. Development Centre of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) 1999. 113 pages.

This is a book about conflict which contrasts in a balanced way (with an abundance of tables and charts) the varying experiences of the three countries from the standpoint of economic analysis. It includes brief reference to earlier history but concentrates mainly on the post­independence period. It concludes that the key economic condition for stability rather than conflict is equitable growth. It describes Tanzania (which has its own chapter, unlike Kenya and Uganda which are grouped together) as having been the most stable country, avoiding even the relatively minor outbreaks suffered by Kenya and attributes this to its inclusive and egalitarian policies along with some historical and political factors. The paper makes sound recommendations for both government and donor policy and repeatedly emphasises the need for inclusive economic and social policies. Democratic reforms alone will not resolve and may even cause political violence it states -DRB.

THEY CAME TO AFRICA. 200 YEARS OF THE ASIAN PRESENCE IN TANZANIA. Lois Lobo. Sustainable Village. PO Box 23904. Dar es Salaam. 100 pages.

The author of this informative illustrated oral history book is a fourth generation Tanzanian Asian who chronicles the lives of Asians who emigrated at various times from India to Tanzania. What makes the book doubly interesting is that the 20 extended families described are selected from the Zaroastrian, Hindu, Jain, Sunni, Ismaili, Ithnasheri, Bohra, Christian, Sikh and Buddhist communities. Even the author admitted that when she started writing the book she did not know enough about these various communities and so she includes a helpful introductory chapter on each sub-group and the differing religious cultures. (Thank you Gloria Mawji for sending me this book for review -Editor.)

BEEKEEPING AND SOME HONEY BEE PLANTS IN UMALILA, SOUTHERN TANZANIA. Paul Latham. 92 pages with over 100 colour photographs. 1999. Available from Bees for Development, Troy, Monmouth NP25 4AB £33.

This is the English edition of a manual produced in Swahili. It is intended to encourage the conservation and planting of useful bee plants (74 are illustrated) in the southern highlands. The introductory section describes log hive beekeeping practised in the area and shows a typical smoker constructed from bamboo.

LOVE -IS IT BLACK OR WHITE? E. Cory-King & V. Ngalinda. Citron Press. 1999.231 pages.

Despite a challenging title that has the appearance of a sociological inquiry, Cory-King’s novel succeeds in promising a little more than it can deliver. Upendo (love) follows the relationship between Eliza, a young woman from Nyaishozi (Lake Victoria), and Mark, a Black English expatriate, posted to work in Tanzania. The couple’s problematic relationship allows the narrative to bring to the fore the dilemma facing young Tanzanian women in a modem context as they struggle against the opposing forces of traditionalism and westernisation. The treatment of Mark and Eliza’s cross-cultural relationship at times shows an interesting level of insight, but on the whole it is burdened by the author’s obsession with cultural nationalism.

Upendo resists falling into any specific genre of novel, precisely because it can’t make up its mind what direction to follow. Cory-King’s narrative moves from one debate to another without really accommodating any depth of discussion; stumbling from the issue of African feminism onto the topic of development and the next minute returning to the subject of cultural nationalism. I remain uncertain as to the author’s intention in stereotyping the novel’s central characters. Could this possibly have been deliberate? Whatever the reason, Upendo has got the lot: the headstrong ‘African Queen’; the greedy Swahili Moslem trader; the handsome yet stubborn male hero; and of course the stiff upper lipped British parents, and not forgetting the down-to-earth American feminist. On the subject of character representation, I became even more concerned when the heroine arrives in Oxford Circus and is ‘instantly assaulted by a pair of black men fighting with knives!’ In fact the only other representation of blacks in England is of Mark’s parents who are portrayed as wealthy and aristocratic as Queen Elizabeth herself. Is this really a realistic representation? By this time, I had consoled myself with the fact that Cory-King’s novel is in fact more of a fairytale then a serious novel.

Indeed, in true fairytale style, the final chapter sees the heroine transported in a glittering carriage (all right, it’s a Mercedes not a pumpkin) to a fairytale wedding with a real prince charming. The more compelling parts of the novel are furnished with vivid and colourful descriptions of Tanzanian village life, thanks to V. Ngalinda who assisted Cory-King by acting as a cultural advisor, and they make lively and entertaining reading.

Readers who have had experience of living in Tanzania may well enjoy this novel, as Cory-King has obviously worked hard to adorn her narrative with the vibrant characteristics of everyday life in rural Tanzania.
Jonathan Donovan

CLIMBING MOUNT KILIMANJARO. S W Carmichael and S Stoddard. 1999. 112 pages. Approximately $ 15.00.



Anyone returning to Dar es Salaam after a prolonged absence in recent years will have been struck above all by two things: its prodigious expansion and an apparently vibrant urban economy which has emerged in the wake of economic liberalisation. In this article, co-written by geographers from the universities of Glasgow and Dar es Salaam, connections between these two phenomena are explored. Davis and Mwamfupe argue that the nature of the city’s growth since the early 1990s has been fundamentally affected by the implementation of structural adjustment policies in Tanzania, not necessarily for the better. Prior to 1992, urban growth in Dar es Salaam could be characterised as taking the form of ‘ribbon’ development, which entailed expansion along the main arterial routes leading out of the city. This was prompted by demand for residential space, but more particularly peri-urban land was occupied as agricultural land and used for subsistence purposes in place of, or supplementary to, waged employment. The direction of this development was determined above all by transport availability. In the 1980s, the government-owned company, Usafiri Dar es Salaam, had a virtual monopoly over urban transport, providing irregular and inefficient services to only the most accessible areas, notably those located along the roads heading west and north from the city. As a result, development tended to occur close to these routes.

Since 1992, as the impact of structural adjustment policies has begun to be felt, the character of Dar es Salaam’s expansion has changed. ‘Ribbon’ development has been replaced by ‘in-fill’ development -the occupation of vacant areas between existing population settlements. This has been conditioned above all by the de-regulation of the urban transport sector, with new areas being settled as privately-owned public transport has expanded apace, reaching formerly inaccessible locations. A progression is described whereby pioneer settlers are initially serviced by Land Rovers, and as communities expand and roads improve they are eventually incorporated into the city-wide network of vipanya (small mini-buses) and dala-dalas (larger mini-buses), which in turn encourages further settlement in neighbouring areas. In addition, ‘in-fill’ development has been stimulated by an expansion in car ownership in the 1990s, which has also opened up locations previously considered too remote. Both car and home ownership have received official support amongst state employees, in the shape of supplementary entitlements. Consequently, in some of the ‘in-fill’ areas surveyed by the authors around two-thirds of the houses under construction were owned by government employees.

Another change occurring in the wake of structural adjustment, Davis and Mwamfupe argue, is that the acquisition of land for subsistence purposes has given way to acquisition for investment purposes (either in the shape of property development and rental, or for commercial agriculture). A construction boom in the peri-urban areas has been stimulated by a growth of surplus capital in the de-regulated urban economy. This surplus has stemmed from the expanding economic opportunities resulting from the removal of import-export restrictions and other obstacles to trade. It also arose from -up to the mid-1990s, at least -corruption amongst government officials, who took advantage of the abundant opportunities for private gain during the permissive, liberalising regime of President Mwinyi. Davis and Mwamfupe lament the fact that the surplus generated since the implementation of structural adjustment has been invested in construction and property, as opposed to manufacturing activity. This is one indication, they argue, that structural adjustment in Tanzania is failing in one of its main aims -the promotion of sustainable long-term investment in the productive capacity of the economy. They are concerned that as the consumption boom which occurred in the wake of liberalisation wanes, and as President Mkapa’s anti-corruption initiatives begin to have an impact (thus blocking another source of private -if illicit -surplus), the city’s long term economic health will be adversely affected.

Davis and Mwamfupe are right to voice their concern. However, the position is perhaps not as serious as they fear. Firstly, the construction industry is not -as they acknowledge in an aside -necessarily a ‘consumption-dominated’ rather than a productive activity -it has important linkages which help stimulate economic growth. Secondly, as the memory of the nationalisation of industry and assets in the dirigiste 1970s and 1980s fades (to which the authors, in part, attribute investors reluctance to support industry as opposed to the less risky property development) investors -both domestic and foreign -should become more confident about sinking capital into long-term productive projects. Indeed, there is already some evidence of this occurring -the Bora Shoe Company and Associated Breweries are two examples of recently established local manufacturing companies producing goods for domestic consumption. However, Davis and Mwamfupe are surely right in concluding that without increased investment in industry, the urban economy will be hard-put to provide for its rapidly expanding population. This, as they indicate, is an important failing of structural adjustment policy in Tanzania.
Andrew Burton

AGENCIES IN FOREIGN AID: COMPARING CHINA, SWEDEN AND THE UNITED STATES IN TANZANIA. Ed: Goram Hyden and R Mukandala. Macmillan. 1999. 246pp. £45.00.

In a review of this book in African Affairs (99) Douglas Rimmer writes that Tanzania was a special favourite of donors in the 1960’s and 1970’s especially of Sweden and so warm were the relations that SIDA’s aid could be given as a ‘country programme’ or effectively on the recipient’s terms. ‘Not until 1984 was this approach reluctantly conceded to have been a mistake’. US aid was governed by presidential diktats and congressional prohibitions so that, according to Rimmer, ‘it seems indulgent to characterise it as ‘pragmatic altruism’ as the book does. The Chinese delivered loan aid-in-kind and the resulting enterprises were left to the management of Tanzanians who, according to the book, ‘messed them up’ along with the rest of the state sector. ‘Chinese efforts at rescue through the formation of joint ventures were not well received and the loans have not been repaid’. The book finds that none of the methods of providing aid proved satisfactory and recommends the payment of aid into ‘autonomous public funds, rather like banks or research councils to which bids could be made for complementary funding by institutions (NGO as well as governmental) already receiving their core requirements from other sources. A possible implication would be that aid flows would be much reduced.


It has long been argued that radio is by far the most effective media for rural people in poor countries. The breathtaking advances in technology may be changing that idea. Inexpensive, lightweight, easy-to-use digital video equipment, cheap tape’ and portable editing computers are making possible participatory video (PV) -that is, scriptless video production directed by local people.

In these three fascinating articles the authors describe work that has been going on in southern Tanzania since the mid-1990s. They show that PV is an excellent tool in processes of public consultation, advocacy and policy dialogue, as well as for mediation in conflicts.

Experiments began with the setting up of a communications media facility in Mtwara as part of the Rural Integrated Project Support (RIPS) Programme. The Mtwara Video Centre was formed in 1994. The object was to promote regional rural media that would give villagers a voice and improve their access to information. In this way villagers could influence the management of local natural resources and social services.

Villagers and facilitators with basic video camera skills work together to tell a story so that a social or environmental problem can be aired. During filming the raw material is shown back to the villages where it is shot and villagers choose representatives to help with the editing. Then the edited film is shown in the villages.

One issue chosen and discussed by villagers was prompted by women who ask why men in their village say that all women who sell food and locally produced artefacts are prostitutes. Another arose from complaints from a youth group that they have no market for the cashew nuts they are processing. In a third case schoolgirls complained that when they return from school each day they are faced with a heavy work load while boys have only light duties.

To the question “Isn’t radio a more appropriate medium for reaching rural people?” the authors say: “For reaching out to rural people, yes. But for setting up a dialogue through exchanging tapes with others, and for rural people reaching urban people and policy makers, we found video much more effective. “For capturing the interest of an entire village and initiating debate, a video show is better than playing back an audio tape. Both video and radio are more cost effective than print for communicating with thousands of rural people -particularly if they cannot read. ”

The authors make a much wider point, namely that “there is actually a TV set in the majority of the world’s villages today, even in many places where there is no electricity. People are beginning to watch CNN and BBC in Shinyanga, Mtwara and in Pemba. This is only the beginning of a globalised media landscape in which almost every person in the world is able to watch the same TV images. In this situation doesn’t the decentralisation of video imagery production make a lot of sense?”
Derek Ingram

KNOWLEDGE AND POWER: THE DESIGN AND IMPLEMENTATION OF GENDER POLICIES IN MALAWI, TANZANIA AND ZIMBABWE. Nicola Swainson. International Journal of Educational Development. Vo120. No 1. pp 15

LIBERALISATION, GENDER AND THE LAND QUESTION IN SUB-SAHARAN AFRICA. Gender and Development. 7 (3) November 1999. 10 pages. This paper focuses on case studies in Tanzania and Zimbabwe and states that current theories of land and debates on gender issues fail to explain the complex processes through which women’s access to land have been affected, contested and negotiated during socio­economic and political restructuring.

CENTS AND SOCIABILITY: HOUSEHOLD INCOME AND SOCIAL CAPITAL IN RURAL TANZANIA. Deepa Narayan and Lant Pritchet. World Bank/University of Chicago. 1999. Pp 26. After outlining the various concepts of social capital (eg. membership in voluntary groups such as churches, political parties, burial societies farmers groups) the authors explain why and how they created data on social capital using a large-scale household survey designed to illicit social connections and attitudes. By using the Social Capital and Poverty Survey and data from a different survey on incomes, they show that a village’s social capital has an effect on incomes.


The first paper points out that, because of limited public sector resources, until the early 90’s the city authority collected less than 5% of the total refuse generated in the city each day. It evaluates a number of innovative approaches which have proved effective in recent years -emergency cleanup campaigns, community involvement, disposal site management and waste recycling. The second paper writes about the conceptual confrontation among three different approaches to urban development planning in the city -Land-Use Planning, Information Management and Participatory Urban Management.

FINDING WAYS TO FIGHT CHILD LABOUR IN TANZANIA. K. Mehra-Kerpelman. World of Work. No 28. 1999. 3 pages. This article describes how the ILO’s International Programme for the Elimination of Child Labour is helping Tanzania to cope with this problem. It shows how in urban areas children below 15 constitute about half the labour force and that other major areas of child employment include plantation agriculture, artisanal mines and prostitution.

A PLAGUE OF PARADOXES: AIDS, CULTURE AND DEMOGRAPHY IN NORTHERN TANZANIA. P Steel and P W Setel. University of Chicago Press. Pp 272. $19.00. 1999. A case study about the Chagga people and the cultural circumstances out of which AIDS emerged.

THE SOCIAL SERVICES CRISIS OF THE 1990: STRATEGIES FOR SUSTAINABLE SYSTEMS IN TANZANIA. (Making of Modern Africa Series). Ed: Anna Tibaijuka. Ashgate Publishing Co. 1999. $73.00.

FAMILY PLANNING AND THE POLITICS OF POPULATION IN TANZANIA: INTERNATIONAL TO LOCAL DISCOURSE. Lisa Richey, University of North Carolina. Journal of Modern African Studies. 37.3. 1999. pp 30.

One of the first Third World countries to introduce family planning services in 1959, Tanzania, according to this paper, has been one of the last in Africa to prepare a comprehensive policy. The peculiar ambiguity and ambivalence of the government’s National Population Policy is thoroughly explored, but not entirely explained in this carefully considered study.

When former President Julius Nyerere ardently supported family planning for the purpose of child spacing some leftist groups and religious leaders combined to oppose it and even forced the closure of some clinics during the 1970s, with the leftists blaming “an imperialist and capitalist tendency.”

Posing ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ approaches to the problem the writer describes the latter as tackling it on the basis of the freedom of the individual from interference, especially by government and institutions, while the former sees it in terms of what a person “is actually able to do or be.” The negatives see population as quantitative and the increase in the population leading to the overburdening of development systems, such as the environment, health care and education -even the family itself -while the positives focus on the ‘quality’ of people. Rather than focusing simply on whether or not people have access to services it stresses people’s productive capacities, calling for more social sector spending, employment creation and state assistance for the most vulnerable. The writer suspects that the sudden policy shift from a ‘development’ to a ‘population’ solution might have “strategic” motives, especially as it came at a time when the economy was “hitting rock-bottom”, dramatically altering its relationship with donors and international lending institutions. Developing countries stopped referring to international population assistance as racist, genocidal or imperialistic or accusing western nations of advocating population control as a substitute for foreign aid. It looked very much as though indebtedness and reliance on aid made Third World countries careful about damaging their relations with the West. By maintaining a strategic ambivalence, she believes, Tanzania was able to appease donors by promoting subtly different demographic objectives. During the 1980s changes seemed to be taking place in the government’s overall approach to development, especially when the IMF and the World Bank began to dominate aid to the health sector. The latter began to use “careful” language to avoid any possible implication that its policies had any impact on the government’s national policy, although a Dar es Salaam professor declared that the country was “forced into a policy by conditionalities which were not written down” indicating that the donors really wanted to control population if they were to give aid.

The author concludes that it is unlikely that family planning alone will provide sufficient remedies. It seems that some people in the villages continue to believe that family planning means “white people not wanting Tanzanians to have children”
John Budge

. Lynne Zeitlin Hale. Coastal Management. 28 (1) 2000. 10 pages.

LAKE VICTORIA’S NILE PERCH FISH CLUSTER: INSTITUTIONS, POLITICS AND JOINT ACTION. Winnie V Mitullah. IDS Working Paper No. 87. Brighton Institute of Development Studies. 1999.28 pages.

COASTAL AND MARINE RESOURCE USE CONFLICTS AND SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN TANZANIA. D C P Masalu. Ocean and Coastal Management 43. 2000. 19pp. This paper surveys conflicts (eg: a sugar factory versus fisheries, rice farming versus fisheries, port expansion versus neighbouring users, seaweed farming versus tourism and the marine environment) and recommends the setting up of a lead agency with full authority on all activities in the coastal area.

STROKE MORTALITY IN URBAN AND RURAL TANZANIA. R W Walker and seven others. The Lancet. Vol. 335. May 13, 2000. This paper records the results of regular censuses of a vast population of almost half a million people between 1992 and 1995 including the monitoring of all deaths (11,975) which arose. Amongst the findings were that 5.5% of the deaths were attributed to cerebrovascular disease and that yearly age-adjusted rates per 100,000 were 65 in the urban area, 44 in a fairly prosperous rural area and 35 in a poor rural area (for men) and 88, 33 and 27 (for women) compared with UK rates of 10.8 for men and 8.6 for women. The authors concluded that the high rates in Tanzania were due to untreated hypertension and that ageing of the population was likely to lead to a very large increase in mortality from strokes in the future. (Sir Colin Imray has passed on to us some correspondence he has been having with Sir George Alberti, President of the Royal College of Physicians who is at the University of Newcastle, concerning a related project in which he is interested -it is the Adult Morbidity and Mortality Project –which is looking at all causes of death in Dar es Salaam, Hai and Morogoro (rural) following earlier work on diabetes, hypertension, asthma and epilepsy -Editor).

BIRDS OF DAR ES SALAAM. G Wium Anderson and Fiona Reid. Wildlife Conservation Society of Tanzania. 2000. Dar es Salaam has 470 of Tanzania’s 1,097 bird species but this illustrated guide for novice bird watchers concentrates on 113 of the most likely to be spotted.

. Goren Hyden. Pp 9. Journal of Democracy. Johns Hopkins Univ, Press. 10 (4) 1999. This book review states that Tanzania’s democratic transition path has been unique in the African context. In other countries there has been political polarisation (eg. Kenya), no improvement after a change in government (Zambia) or military rule (Ghana). Democratisation is moving forward slowly.


(12) Pp 18. 1999
This paper states that the ‘fences and fines’ approach to wildlife protection is now perceived to have failed in Africa. In evaluating an alternative approach in which rural communities are given custodianship or management responsibilities (CWM) using the Selous Conservation Programme and seven other African cases, it was found that the communities were generally not interested. Their decision to join the programme was largely influenced by promises of socio-economic benefits which were not fulfilled in line with their expectations.


Continuity and change in colonial and post-colonial East Africa
At a one-day workshop at London’s School of Oriental and African Studies on June 21 organised by Andrew Burton and Michael Jennings papers presented included:

The ‘Haven of Peace’ purged: tackling the undesirable and unproductive poor in Dar es Salaam. 1950-85 (Andrew Burton).
Continuity and Change in the laws of East Africa (Emeritus Professor James S Read).
A critique of development from below: Villagisation and ‘customary’ land practices, Dodoma District. (Ingrid Yngstrom).
Popular participation and development crisis in Tanzania, 1961­66. (Michael Jennings).
Central Administration, Local Government, Cooperatives: Organising the State in Tanzania, 1940’s to 1960’s. (Andreas Eckert, Humboldt University, Berlin).
Using Information and Communication Technologies in Tanzania: responses ofinfOImation professionals (Julia Nawe).

The new East African Community’s Secretary General Francis Muthaura was quoted in the East African on April 24 as saying that regional integration would not be achieved without resistance from groups who benefited from the present situation. 13 articles in the treaty dealing with trade were left for further negotiations when the treaty was signed on November 30 1999. The trade chapter is said not to address in detail the need to eliminate internal tariffs. Tanzania ratified the treaty on June 13 but does not expect to be able to fulfil the next stage, the enactment by parliament of a law to make the treaty legally enforceable, until after the elections in October. The ratification paves the way for the establishment of an East African Legislative Assembly and a Regional Court of Justice. The revived Inter-University Council for East Africa was inaugurated on June 5 at Arusha and Tanzanian Open University Vice Chancellor Professor G V R Mmari was elected Chairman of the 27­member Governing Board. The editorial in the East African (June 19) headed ‘Budgeting for disintegration’ criticized the budgets of the three member countries -‘They strongly suggest that the sister states are pulling in different directions … .Tanzania’s budget contained no specific measures for regional integration … Tanzania clearly feels that it is not helpful to team up with rich neighbours until it has crossed through the valley of poverty … ‘.

According to the East African (June 5) South African investors are losing their favoured status in the country following what it described as the National Bank of Commerce ‘debacle’. The South African ABSA bought the bank for $18 million and then demanded payment of the same amount from another state-owned bank as a delayed inter-bank branch transaction. South African investors were said to have been left out of the preferred list of buyers for the Tanzania Telecommunications Company Ltd. Tanzania Investment Centre Director Samwel Sitta was quoted as saying “Most South African investors are white. When anything happens at a work place Tanzanian workers are reminded of apartheid”.

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