THE DISMANTLING OF UJAMAA
In the first words of a 17-page feature on Tanzania in the December issue of SOUTH magazine. Ahmed Rajab wrote that ‘The dismantling of Ujamma. Tanzania’s brand of socialism, seems to be well under way as President Ali Hassan Mwinyi slowly gains the upper hand in the ideological debate’. The originator and chief ideologue had been former President Julius Nyerere, Chairman of the only party. ‘Since the party holds most of the power, Nyerere is still the effective ruler and he uses his position as Chairman to direct a small group of highly vocal and influential Ujamaa diehards who oppose economic liberalisation …. last year the whole reform process was jeopardised by the ujamaa idealogues when a six-month debate within the party and government held up an IMF structural adjustment loan and donor funds worth nearly US$ 900 million. During the debate Nyerere publicly attacked the Government’s economic policies, describing liberalisation as a breeding ground for thieves and smugglers. He said it allowed importers to bring in goods which were too expensive for most Tanzanians. The World Bank, on the other hand, argued that the trade
In the same SOUTH feature Jane Greening reported that Tanzania has started exporting organic tea, free from artificial chemicals, to the UK and North America. ‘But the operation is not the small-scale farming exercise claimed by the London Herb and Spice Company, which sells the tea in the UK’ she wrote. ‘The Luponde tea estate in the Livingstone mountains is managed by the Mufindi Tea Company, a Joint venture between Lonhro (75%) and the Tanzanian Government. So far, however, only 500 of the 4,000 hectares on the estate are being used to produce tea. The project makes economic as well as ecological sense for the tea can be sold at a much higher price and savings are made on imported fertilisers and herbicides’. The disadvantage is the initial investment needed. It takes three to five years to rid the soil of all chemical traces before the plantation can qualify as organic.
FAITH, HOPE AND CHARITY
A Christmas season story in THE TIMES
AWAKING FROM A LONG NIGHTMARE
Under this heading TIME magazine, in its September 18th issue wrote about ‘Ghosts and Goodwill on the Fabled Isle of Cloves’. The article described Zanzibar as having been known to sailors since Phoenician times and as having been, more recently, ‘a tiny citadel of Marxist doctrine and xenophobia’ – after its 1963 revolution in which at least 5,000 Arabs were killed.
‘In some respects, Zanzibar has changed little in the process. It still operates on Islamic time, with the day starting at 6 a.m. when the clock strikes twelve. And when the clock strikes six, it’s noon. It is said that two white horses fly around the town after midnight to protect the populace. It is also recounted that the screams of slaves can be heard before dawn, a myth perhaps perpetuated by the caterwaul of countless crows and cats. And finally, it is sometimes suggested that the phantoms of such historic figures as Henry Stanley, Richard Burton and David Livingstone, who used Zanzibar as a base for their exploration of Africa’s interior, still haunt the houses that they once occupied ….’
A frail man, Ali Mazud, one of the best known figures on the island, greets a visitor. “Yes” he muses, “Zanzibar was a paradise, a place where a religious man could heal his soul in peace. God willing, it will soon become this again”.
SEX REVERSAL WITH TESTOSTERONE
This is only one of the methods of ensuring that Tilapia in fish ponds in Masasi can be made to grow large and of uniform size according to VSO Volunteer Jonathan Robson who wrote about his experiences in a recent issue of AFRICAN FARMING. The article contained many more hints on how to fish farm effectively including the construction of ponds which can be drained to avoid the cost of nets and the transporting of fingerlings in buckets strapped to the back of motor-bikes rather than in the back of an overheated Landrover.
ZANZIBAR – THE DEBATE CONTINUES
AFRICA EVENTS published in its November issue a letter from a reader strongly criticising it for views expressed in an earlier issue (and reported on in Bulletin of Tanzanian Affairs No 34) on the recent detention of Zanzibar’s former Chief Minister, Seif Sharif Hamad. The reader, Mr. Haji Hassan Haji, complained about the sympathy for the former Chief Minister’s plight expressed in the magazine and claimed that Mr Hamad had himself detained ‘so many people without trial and, worse still, transferred them to mainland Tanzania’. The reader then named seventeen persons who had been detained by Mr Hamad for periods varying from up to six months to two years. Included in the list were the former Attorney General of Zanzibar, Mr Wolfgang Dourado, who, he said, had been detained without trial and had been declared a traitor in public meetings by Mr Hamad. The reader wrote that ‘it is extremely illogical that what Hamad did to others …. should not be done to him’. In fact, in the recent case, all those who were detained had been sent to court to be legally remanded, unlike their predecessors, the reader said. He described Mr Hamad as an ambitious, frustrated and, above all, a selfish young man.
The debate continued in four further articles and letters in the December issue of AFRICA EVENTS.
Several items referred to a meeting of Zanzibaris which had been held in London in August 1989 which had demanded independence for Zanzibar, democracy, freedom of the press and human rights. Another reader of AFRICA EVENTS claimed that Mr Hamadi a ‘patriotic young man’ had been demanding these rights but had been illegally arrested and ‘a pack of lies’ had been concocted to keep him behind bars.
Another writer had different views. ‘At a time when African leaders are fostering stronger political and economic ties the conference had called for the dismantling of the Union to reduce Zanzibar to a small weak nation like the banana republics of the Caribbean. The conference had totally failed to address the real problems of Zanzibar, like the dangers posed by disunity in the country, the deteriorating economic situation, falling standards of health and education and the near bankruptcy of the Zanzibar Government. The government deserved the concerted efforts of all well-meaning Zanzibaris. ‘It is no longer a question of what the Government should do for the people but rather what the people should do for their government to help it to help them’ he wrote.
A half-page cartoon showed the two islands as boats being rowed away from mainland Tanzania towards some waiting sharks.
In the main article under the heading ‘Zanzibar on the Boil’ AFRICA EVENTS stated that Zanzibar Chief Minister Dr Omar Ali Juma, had, since his appointment (after the fall from grace of his predecessor, Mr. Hamad) almost single handedly used his office to fight those ‘whom he perceives to be anti–Union. But the Chief Minister is still a long way away from matching the political acumen displayed by the sophisticated political opposition he is facing’.
The article then went on to report that President Mwinyi had himself entered the fray on a recent visit to Pemba. He had warned agitators that they would be crushed. He likened them to ‘poodles pictured on old gramophones, which represented voices of their masters’. The President said that those seeking an end to the Union were puppets of exiled opponents of the Government. ‘The Government is powerful enough to crush them but we will give them enough rope to hang themselves’ he is reported to have said.
DAR ES SALAAM – TANGA ROAD LINK
DANIDA, the Danish aid agency, has awarded a contract for the first of the new roads in Tanzania to be built under the US$900 million integrated road project which is being co-ordinated by the World Bank, according to the September 18th issue of the AFRICAN ECONOMIC DIGEST. The contract is for the Chalinze-Segera road. Financing for the Segera-Tanga stretch, 1ikely to cost around US$30 million, has not yet been finalised.
Meanwhile, the government has streamlined road construction management in Tanzania. Regional Engineers will be, in future, responsible for technical issues relating to all roads including trunk, regional and feeder roads.
TANZANIA ENTERS THE COMPUTER AGE
AFRICAN BUSINESS in its October 1989 issue wrote that Tanzania is rapidly entering the computer age and that computer agents for overseas multinational companies have embarked on an aggressive sales promotion for the machines.
The Kilimanjaro Hotel has hosted the first Computer Fair organised by the Computer Users Resources Exchange to popularise the use of computers by government, parastatals, private companies and individuals. Major customers are diplomatic missions and international organisations which benefit from duty-free facilities. Foreign exchange constraints limit the extent to which Tanzanian agencies can purchase machines.
NEW YORK’S MARATHON MAJOR
Under this heading the DAILY TELEGRAPH (November 6) featured a large picture, (next to another showing some of the 23,000 New York Marathon runners crossing a bridge), of the well known Tanzanian athlete, Major Juma Ikaanga, who crossed the finishing line having set a new course record of 2:18:01.
A ‘PAJERO’ A DAY
Under the heading ‘Full shops tell only part of the story ‘ AFRICAN BUSINESS (October 1989) reported that the effects of President Mwinyi’s Economic Recovery Programme are now being reflected in Dar es Salaam where brand new Mercedes Benz, BMW’s, Toyotas and other expensive vehicles clog the city’s rugged streets. Shops are stocked with imported clothes and electronic equipment but the price tags assure that they remain far beyond the reach of most Tanzanians.
When the government, towards the end of 1988, introduced a new TShs 500 note (US$ 3.50 at the official rate of exchange) Tanzanians were said to have quickly baptised the note ‘Pajero’ after the Japanese vehicle which can carry up to ten passengers. Now it is said that you need an average of one ‘Pajero’ a day to survive with inflation at 31.2%!
In the January 1990 edition of AFRICA EVENTS it is reported that the old practice under which Tanzanians living near the Kenya border used to have to slip across to do much of their shopping is changing. ‘All Kenya roads now lead to Dar es Salaam, Arusha and Tanga. Sugar. wheat, flour and shoes draw thousands of Kenyans into Tanzania every week.
ECONOMIC EXCLUSION ZONE
The AFRICAN ECONOMIC DIGEST in its issue dated November 27th 1989 stated that the Tanzanian Government has enacted legislation establishing a 200-nautical mile economic exclusion zone including 12 miles of nautical sea. The Act covers exploration of marine resources and scientific research. It recognises the right of other states to freedom of overflight, navigation, the laying of cables and pipelines after prior approval from the Government. Foreigners infringing the law are liable to a maximum fine of US$250,OOO or five years imprisonment.
ZANZIBAR SPRUCES UP HOUSING AND TOURISM FACILITIES
In its October issue AFRICAN BUSINESS wrote that Zanzibar is poised for a multi-million shilling campaign to rehabilitate historic sites, demolish slums and build new houses. The article mentioned a US$399,OOO UNDP donation for Stone Town rehabilitation, another project in Stone Town being financed by the Aga Khan, US$318,OOO from the European Community for the 0ld Fort and other aid from France, Norway and Finland.
MWALIMU NYERERE IN CHINA
The INTERNATIONAL HERALD TRIBUNE published a front page picture in its issue of November 24th 1989 showing a beaming Mwalimu Nyerere being greeted in Beijing by a smiling Mr Deng Xiaoping. The caption stated that Mr Deng ‘urged Third World nations to fight new colonialists’. On the same day the DAILY TELEGRAPH reported that Ethiopia and Eritrean rebels, holding peace talks in Nairobi, had agreed that Tanzania’s ex-President, Julius Nyerere, should co-chair future negotiations alongside former President Jimmy Carter of the United States.
LIKE A FOREST FIRE
URAFIKI TANZANIA the publication of ‘Amities Franco-Tanzaniennes’ the French equivalent of the Britain-Tanzania Society in its Number 42 reported on the fifth World Conference on AIDS held in June last year in Canada. Canadian Television Channel 2 had described the speed of spread of AIDS in Tanzania as ‘like a Forest fire’. A correspondent reported from the village of Kashenie some ‘terrible figures’ – a death every ten days; 100 adults out of a thousand affected; 270 orphans in the village’.
SANCTIONS YET AGAIN?
Under this heading one of the London EVENING STANDARD’s editorials of October 17th strongly attacked Tanzania. Referring to the debate at the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Kuala Lumpur on sanctions against South Africa it wrote that ‘With pointless inevitability the Heads of Government meeting was yet again dominated …. by the question of whether a pompous gaggle of black racialist states will succeed in making Mrs. Thatcher give them still more economic aid while she imposes yet further economic sanctions on a single white racialist state ……. South Africa, after all, is no longer in the Commonwealth, and its human rights record is certainly no worse than that of Tanzania, for instance, which permits demonstrations only in favour of the regime, forcibly relocates its citizens, uses conscript labour, tortures prisoners and detains people without trial’. Kenya and Nigeria also came under fire in the same article.
(The Britain Tanzania Society has addressed a complaint about this article to the Press Council and there has been an exchange of correspondence between the Society and the Evening News – Editor)..
The STANDARD published two letters on the subject in its issue of October 23rd, One was from a reader who protested at the inclusion of Kenya in the article. The other stated that ‘All autocracies try to stamp out opposition. However, in Rumania, Chile, Tanzania or wherever, everyone is treated equally badly, though some are treated worse than others for political reasons …. toe the line or offer a bribe and you’ll be alright … in South Africa, whatever your opinions or behaviour, if you’re black you’re a second class citizen and will stay so’.
TSETSE FLIES IN THE KAGERA BASIN
The German magazine AFRIKA in its November/December issue reported that a new agreement has been signed between Kenya and Tanzania for a joint project aimed at controlling the tsetse fly which transmits trypanosomiasis in man and livestock. The project’s first phase will involve three months of research on the types of tsetse fly prevalent in the Kagera River basin.
IN DAKAWA ANC EXILES TRAIN FOR THE DAY APARTHEID GOES
Under this heading Buchizya Mseteka, writing in the Johannesburg STAR’s October 11th issue described how the South African African National Congress (ANC) is running an ambitious project to teach its members useful skills for a post-apartheid South Africa. ‘The ANC has transformed the village of Dakawa, 250 miles west of Dar es Salaam, into a thriving settlement for 1,000 of its members. Gullies have given way to large fields of maize and there are 800 pigs, 400 cattle, 1,000 goats and 1,000 chickens. Dakawa is self-sufficient in food and produces enough to supply ANC members elsewhere in Tanzania. Nothing in the rural peace of Dakawa reminds the followers of South Africa’s largest guerilla movement of the violent unrest at home or the repeated detentions most of them suffered before fleeing into exile.
Manager Mr. Dennis Osborne and his labour force of ninety grow 90 tons of maize a year. They hope to double production this year. The camp is preparing to accommodate 7,000 new members in 1990 when 180 new homes now under construction are completed.
HUNDREDS DEAD IN BIRDS CARGO
According to the GUARDIAN on December 11th 1989 KLM is investigating why many hundreds of birds out of a cargo of 15,000, including flamingos, were found dead on arrival at Heathrow from Dar es Salaam en route to Miami. An RSPCA spokeswoman said that the society might prosecute.
MONEY FOR HEALTH
‘In a dusty township located in a wild expanse of northern Tanzania, Dr. E. Nashara runs a ninety-bed Government hospital, a health centre and fifteen dispensaries serving about 100,000 people with a budget of US$30,OOO a year. With that amount of money he has to buy medicine, provide meals to in-patients, run and service two antiquated vehicles and pay utility bills – all this for a full twelve months’.
Thus began an article in the May 1989 issue of WORLD HEALTH. The article, written by Sidney Ndeki, went on to explain how Dr Nashara has a staff of more than 100 who had to be paid every month. And that same budget also had to be used to support immunisation programmes, nutrition, maternal and child services, the control of common preventable diseases and the running of health education programmes. “At times I find myself in a dilemma” he says. “When the budget is in the red should I ask for extra funds to purchase fuel for vehicles to collect drugs or water from the spring or firewood for cooking meals for in-patients?”
The article pointed out the limited part of the medical curriculum at the University of Dar es Salaam devoted to economics and health management, the savings that could be made through careful planning of health care and the need for more information to permit a comparison of alternatives. For example, a study in Nzega District had indicated that a saving of 50% could be made in the costs of food by planning menus better.
HIVING UP A TREE
INTERNATIONAL AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT in its July-August 1989 issue
published an article under this heading by Jeremy Herklots about bees in Tabora. It reported that Mr Juma Marifedha supports some 30 people at Malongwe in Tebore Region from beekeeping. But the article pointed out that the scale of this activity would not be possible without the organisational and marketing help of a 6,000 strong cooperative society. It estimated that about 400,000 square kilometres of Tanzania’s forest and woodland could be capable of supporting up to four million productive honey bee colonies. Around one and a half million traditional hives are thought to exist although not all are colonised or harvested on a regular basis. (Tabora honey can be bought from Traidcraft, Kingsway, Gateshead NE11 ONE – Editor)
THE MASAI’S FATE: FENCED IN AT LAST?
Under this heading the NEW YORK TIMES (October 6, 1989) discussed changes going on in Masailand. ‘A major catalyst for the changes is a recent reversal in policy of the Tanzanian Government which, under the leadership of Julius Nyerere, had been committed to collectivisation. In the last two years the Government of President Mwinyi has encouraged what had been discouraged before individual farming. As a result, Tanzanians and even some foreigners, are coveting the seemingly empty spaces of Masailand …. Conservationists also have designs on the land; for example, the Tanzanian National Parks Board has been urged by conservationists to declare a large tract of Masailand, bordering on the Tarangire National Park, as a conservation area, which would prohibit herding or agriculture, effectively barring the MasaL In response the graceful and militant Masai have gone on the defensive, acquiring title to their lands and beginning to grow crops and erect fences’.
The article went on to describe the case of a Mr Clements Rokonga (35) who sees big spending European tourists criss-crossing the Ngorongoro crater area in minivans viewing lions, rhinoceros, elephant, buffalo and pink flamingo on the land he used to consider his own. Fifteen years ago the Masai who lived on the Ngorongoro Crater floor were forcibly removed by the police. Mr Rokunga pointed to the spots on the crater floor where he and his sister were born. ‘To help feed his family he went back and planted a tiny patch of potatoes two years ago, which was against the law. Then he heard the police were coming. “I pulled out the potatoes and buried them before the police came” he said. More than 600 other Masai were not so lucky; they were fined and had their produce burned’.
Readers later commented on the article. One said he was horrified to learn that Tanzania was ‘encouraging subjugation of some of its oldest and noblest inhabitants’; another appealed for balance in development – ‘the situation that threatens to fence in the Masai calls for soul searching and imaginative thinking by Tanzanian policy makers’ he wrote.
A SLOWING IN POPULATION GROWTH
BRITISH OVERSEAS DEVELOPMENT in a recent issue reviewed the
preliminary conclusions of the ODA supported national census conducted in 1988. The enumerated population on the mainland was 22.53 million; in Zanzibar the figure was 640,000. This indicated a slowing down in population growth from 3.2% per annum between 1967 and 1977 to 2.8% p.a. from 1977 to 1988. Further statistics will reveal trends in fertility and mortality and migration patterns.
THIS BULLETIN UNDER ATTACK
The editorial in the TROPICAL AGRICULTURE ASSOCIATION’S NEWSLETTER (September 1989) took the Editor of this Bulletin to task because of the latter’s failure to publish a letter from a reader.
In Bulletin No 33 a Japanese contributor had given a rather frank personal account, under the heading ‘Tanzania and I’, of her reactions, on a first visit, several years ago, to Tanzania. She wrote critically about colonialism and also about the use of the English language in Tanzania. (We subsequently received a letter complaining about her views from the Editor of the Tropical Agriculture Association Newsletter. The letter was not published for a number of reasons, one of which was that much of the content referred to Japanese colonialism, a subject to which the Bulletin of Tanzanian Affairs does not believe it should devote any of its very limited space – Editor).
However, the editorial was not entirely critical. It referred to the Bulletin as ‘a remarkably well produced publication full of sound views’.
WASTE STABILIZATION PONDS IN TANZANIA
A three-page article in Vol 8 No 1 (July 1989) in WATERLINES by Michael Yhdego of the Ardhi Institute contained some interesting and disturbing factual information about what happens to Tanzania’s industrial waste.
According to the article the central business area of Dar es Salaam and the high and medium density residential areas are served by a sewerage system which reaches 12.8% of the city’s population. The sewerage is discharged through an ocean out fall which is defective and too short. This has resulted in reports of fungal infections caught by people bathing along the polluted beaches.
Of the people not served by a sewerage system 11% use septic tanks and soakage pits and the remaining 76% use pit latrines. However, 70 to 80% of Tanzania’s industries are concentrated in Dar es Salaam and the wastewater from industries such as breweries and textile plants is discharged without any form of on-site treatment.
Much of the article was devoted to a discussion on the reasons for the failure of many of the waste stabilization ponds which have been constructed in recent years. The writer is critical of the quality of the engineering at the time of construction and the siting. In Dar es Salaam it had been ‘somewhat haphazard’. The waste stabilization ponds of Mgulani, Msasani, Buguruni and Ubungo are located at 10m, 20m, and 5m respectively from the nearest houses. A minimum distance of 500 metres is recommended. All these ponds are said to be breeding places for mosquitoes; they produce foul smells and attract flies.
Maintenance has been poor because the responsibility for sewerage systems and ponds has been ‘shifting from the local city council to the regional government and back for the last twenty years’. The author regards the setting up in 1984 of the Dar es Salaam Sewerage and Sanitation Department as an important corrective step.
A STATE VISIT TO JAPAN
The Japanese press gave a lot of publicity to the impending arrival in Japan of President Mwinyi. The JAPAN TIMES (December 17, 1989) had a two-page supplement on Tanzania and the ASAHI EVENING NEWS (December 20) devoted one page to the news. Each published articles describing Tanzania with profiles of the President and welcoming statements. It was revealed that during the six-day visit Japan and Tanzania were expected to agree on US$14.0 million worth of non-project assistance for structural adjustment programmes, a contribution towards reducing the Tanzanian deficit and to upgrade telecommunications and broadcasting systems. There was a photograph of the Japanese Emperor visiting the Ngorongoro National Park and an article on tourism in Tanzania. Reference was made to a group of Japanese adventurers who had, last year, chosen to ‘soar over Mount Kilimanjaro in gliders’.