BUSINESS & THE ECONOMY

by Ben Taylor

Government seeks to allay investors’ concerns
The government sought to reassure investors that the private sector is seen by government as a key partner in Tanzania’s goal of becoming a semi-industrialised middle-income economy by 2025. This followed reports that a number of recent regulatory changes had been introduced that were perceived as unfriendly to business.

The government’s reassurances came at a meeting of more than 50 investors from various countries in Dar es Salaam in October, organised by the Mwalimu Nyerere Memorial Academy.

“In almost every country the private sector is a catalyst for sustainable development. The government acknowledges the contribution of the private sector to the country’s economic growth,” the Permanent Secretary in the Prime Minister’s Office (Policy, Coordination and Parliamentary Affairs), Prof Faustine Kamuzora, told participants in the symposium.

Earlier, some participants had expressed concern about tax rates and a perceived lack of private sector consultation in implementation of mega development projects.

Similar debates were heard elsewhere in Dar es Salaam among a different group of investors. The Second Annual Private Equity in Tanzania Conference, arranged by the East Africa Venture Capital Association (EAVCA), discussed ways of financing the country’s industrial aspirations with the stated aim of “restoring Tanzania’s status as a preferred investment destination in this part of Africa.”

EAVCA executive director Eva Warigia said political and regulatory changes in recent years have projected a negative image of Tanzania to prospective investors. “We think that information circulated through local and international media has damaged our reputation. We therefore called the investors to show them the reality and possible opportunities for investment,” she said. “In any democratic country, political and regulatory shifts are inevitable but truth be told, the Tanzanian government is supportive of the private sector.”

An associate analyst with Control Risks Company, Ms Patricia Rodrigues, assured investors that it is less risky to invest in Tanzania than elsewhere in East Africa. She attributed this to political stability and strong economic growth.

CEO Roundtable of Tanzania chairman Sanjay Rughani, who is also chief executive of Standard Chartered Bank Tanzania, said potential areas for investment include commercial farming, digital services, oil and gas, transport and logistics and social services.

“I have been working in the private sector in the country for a long time and also attend many public-private dialogues in my capacity as CEOrt chairman and member of the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation.

Tanzania falls in ease-of-doing-business survey
Tanzania has fallen to 144th position in the World Bank’s Doing Business Report, from 137th a year earlier. This is the 16th in a series of annual reports investigating regulations that enhance business activity and those that constrain it across the globe. It’s stated aim is to advance both regulatory quality and efficiency.

The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Charles Mwijage, said that Tanzania’s drop in the rankings was a result of various procedural checks instituted to reduce malpractices in the business sector. He said he hopes that the measures instituted will facilitate future improvements. “These rankings don’t give me a headache because we have been dealing with some challenges, and I’m sure the measures we have taken will help to improve the business climate,” Mr Mwijage told The Citizen in an interview.

Among her East African neighbours, Tanzania ranked in fourth place. Rwanda is on top (ranked 29th globally), followed by Kenya (61st) and Uganda (127th), while South Sudan (185th) and Burundi (168th) were at the bottom.

The most challenging issues for Tanzania, according to report, were cross-border trade, protecting minority investors and resolving insolvency.

Mr Mwijage said to address these challenges, the government would continue to implement plans and policies, which include reducing fees and taxes and reducing delays in business transactions. He said Tanzania did not perform well on paying taxes due to the fact that many businesses are informal with owners who consider taxes as a nuisance and not obligation. “We are continuing to change the mindset of our business community because many were used to the ‘business as usual’ way of doing things,” he said.

On delays which have pushed Tanzania down the cross-border trade rankings, Mr Mwijage said these were caused by checks of vehicles to avoid trafficking of arms and people. He also said the government has improved export and import procedures and infrastructure as well as constructing One Stop Border Posts to ease procedures and save time.

Tanzania performed slightly better in starting business, getting electricity, getting credit, enforcing contracts, paying taxes, registering property and construction permits.

Issues raised in the report are similar to those cited in the government’s statement of commitment to increasing the ease of doing business: the Blueprint on Regulatory Reforms to Improve the Business Environment.

The blueprint mentions regulatory inconveniences caused by overlapping of functions of various regulatory authorities, as well as the duplication of registration requirements of the Social Security Regulatory Authority (SSRA), Business Registration and Licensing Authority (BRELA) and Tanzania Employment Services Agency (TAESA). There are also conflicting geographical restrictions regarding work permits and residence permits, the blueprint says.

Overhaul underway at Dar Port
A government initiative – the Dar es Salaam Gateway Maritime Project (DMGP) – has begun implementation, with the aim of enabling the port of Dar es Salaam to operate at world-class level. The project, delivered by the through the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA), is designed to improve cargo handling at the port.

The first phase of the project will cost an estimated USD $150 million and involves deepening and strengthening existing berths numbers 1 to 11 to 14.5 metres, plus the construction of a new, multipurpose berth at Gerezani Creek. The project will also see deepening and widening of the port entrance channel and turning circle to 15.5 metres, and of the harbour basin in the port to 14.5 metres, plus improving the rail linkages and platform in the port.

TPA says it is aiming to introduce faster truck and wagons turnaround times from the port, and to auction overstayed cargo abandoned at the port, so as to get more space to serve customers and stakeholders in a more efficient manner.

Given the traffic forecast, the TPA-DMGP project follows the growing global trend of creating capacity ahead of demand. This is alongside construction of new ports at Chongoleani in Tanga Region, Bagamoyo and Mwambani Bay and KwalaRuvu Dry Port 47 miles west of Dar es Salaam. The Chongoleani Port will be dedicated to handling crude oil shipments for the upcoming Uganda-Tanzania pipeline.

Expansion of port capacities is being delivered in tandem with the development of inland road and rail networks, including upgrades to the Central Line and TAZARA railways. The completion of the DMGP project and implementation of other projects at various other ports will fast-track Tanzania’s quest for industrialisation and support the regional quest to attain fast social-economic development.

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TRANSPORT

by Ben Taylor

New ship purchased for Lake Victoria
President John Magufuli attended the signing of a contract to build a new ship, which will ply Lake Victoria between Mwanza and Bukoba, Musoma and ports in Kenya and Uganda. The signing took place two weeks before the tragic sinking of the MV Nyerere (see earlier article in this section.)

The new ship, which will be built at the cost of TSh 88.76 bn, will be 90 metres long, 17 metres wide and 10 metres high, and will have a capacity of carrying 1,200 passengers and 400 tonnes of cargo including 20 cars.

The project is to be implemented by two South Korean companies in collaboration with the National Service-economic wing, Suma JKT.

The construction of a new ship comes four and seven years after MV Victoria and MV Butiama respectively suspended operations because of technical issues, which greatly increased transport costs and times around the Lake Zone. It also comes 22 years since the MV Bukoba sank causing close to 1,000 deaths.

Speaking after witnessing the signing of the contract, President Magufuli said the projects were funded domestically. “There is not a single shilling from South Korea. Their ambassador is here to ensure that we get the value of money from the projects,” the President said. He added that citizens’ participation in the projects – through Suma-JKT – “would ensure that part of the money remains in the country.”

The project is scheduled to be completed within a year.

Welcoming the Head of State, the minister for Works, Transport and Communications, Mr Isack Kamwelwe, said they now have a challenge of increasing cargo to neighbouring countries.

“Together with the minister for Finance and Planning Dr Phillip Mpango and Industries, Trade and Investment minister Charles Mwijage, we will meet Kariakoo traders to understand their challenges in realising this endeavour,” he said.

FastJet and ATCL
The revived national airline, Air Tanzania Company Limited (ATCL), has been reinstated in the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Clearing House (ICH) after meeting its obligations. This allows ATCL to resume use of the IATA ticket platform and opens the possibility of flights to Mumbai, India.

The national carrier lost its IATA membership in 2008 due to non­payment of debts, a development that saw the ATCL banned from all international aviation transactions.

Further, in mid-December, ATCL took delivery of another new aircraft, the first of two Airbus A220 aircraft. A sister aircraft is expected in January 2019.

With a range just over 5,000km, the A220 will bring many points in Central and West Africa within range of Dar es Salaam, while giving the carrier a low-risk option to venture into the Middle East or grow frequency on existing domestic and international routes.

This will bring Tanzania’s active fleet to seven aircraft, comprising four propeller-driven Bombardier Q400s, a Boeing 787 Dreamliner and now the two A220s. A further Bombardier Q400 is also expected in 2019.

Meanwhile, the continued re-emergence of ATCL has taken place alongside growing difficulties faced by low-cost rival airline, FastJet.

FastJet Tanzania, which as recently as August had been planning to lease several new aircraft for routes within Tanzania, has since met with regulatory and financial difficulties. In September, Fastjet PLC – then the majority shareholder of FastJet Tanzania – disclosed in filings with the London Stock Exchange (LSE) that it was considering closing down its operations in Tanzania, on account of the “continued losses generated in the country.” The statement showed a $14.6 million net loss on $30.1 million in revenues for the six-month period to June 30, 2018.

Laurence Masha, a former Minister of Home Affairs who was on November 6, 2018 appointed as the first executive chairman of the FastJet Tanzania, told The Citizen newspaper in early December that had he bought 47% of the company shares owned by locals and other 17 owned by FastJet PLC, making him the new majority shareholder.

However, the new owners immediately ran into difficulties with the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority (TCAA), which seized one of the airline’s two aircraft, citing unpaid debts. As the other aircraft was undergoing repairs, the company was forced to cancel all scheduled flights in December and January while it sought a new aircraft. At the time of writing, there are conflicting reports as to whether TCAA will allow this newly leased aircraft to enter the country and to operate flights.

“Fastjet Tanzania has paid some debts and others were paid by Fastjet PLC. We spent the remaining money to lease the plane and pay regulatory charges. They should now allow me to resume operations to get money for paying the remaining debts,” said Mr Masha.

“We really need the wisdom of the regulators and supportive cooperation from the government because we cannot manage to pay the debts while we are not doing business. I have talked to TCAA and the minister and I’m looking forward to getting their support after the festive season,” he added.

“Fastjet PLC thought the company would get cooperation from the government when it had a local investor but I don’t see it happening. There was a time I did not sleep for five days when I was busy looking for strategic investors to put their money into the company. They always ask if we have this supportive cooperation with the government,” he said.

However, TCAA Director General Hamza Johari told reporters that it was not true that they denied the airline the permit but that the applications were submitted late and were yet to be processed because of Christmas holidays.

He said that the authority received three letters from Fastjet Tanzania on December 24th, including one in which the company requested to bring in the Boeing 737-500 plane from South Africa and another on its business and financial plans.

“We will respond to all the letters in accordance with the law,” he said, adding that “if they really want to invest in the aviation sector, they must be more serious.”

The TCAA boss also denied allegations that it was favouring Air Tanzania Limited Company (ATCL) in order to give the state-owned airline a monopoly over the local market. He said such claims were unfounded as the sector was already competitive.

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HEALTH

by Ben Taylor

Staff at North KCMC Regional Hospital pictured during a visit by Dr Faustine Ndugulile on Nov 22 (uptymes.com)

Disagreements over family planning
President John Magufuli spoke in September against birth control and family planning. In doing so, he reignited a debate that had largely died down after a similar flare-up early in his presidency.

Speaking at a rally in Meatu, the President advised people to ignore those advocating birth control, some of it coming from foreigners, “because it has sinister motives”. “Those going for family planning are lazy, because they are afraid they will not be able to feed their children. They do not want to work hard to feed a large family. And that is why they opt for birth control and end up with one or two children only,” he said. “You people of Meatu keep livestock. You are good farmers. You can then feed your children. Why would you opt for birth con­trol? These are my views, but I do not see any need for birth control in Tanzania,” he said.

He added: “I have travelled to Europe and elsewhere and I have seen the side effects of birth control. In some countries they are now strug­gling with declining population growth. They have no labour force,” President Magufuli, who was on a tour of Lake Zone regions said.

He urged Tanzanians to keep reproducing because the government was increasing investment in maternal health specifically and the health sec­tor in general. This echoes he previous argument, back in 2016, that his government’s decision to end school fees meant people could give birth to as many children as possible because education was no longer expen­sive. “Women can now throw away their contraceptives. Education is now free,” President Magufuli had said.

On this more recent occasion, President Magufuli was speaking in the presence of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) representa­tive in Tanzania Jacqueline Mahon and the minister for Health Ummy Mwalimu.

The main opposition party, Chadema, criticised the President’s state­ments, and pledged to mobilise the public to safeguard family planning initiatives. “We expected the President to be at the forefront of sup­porting family planning initiatives amid challenges the country faces, especially in planning our highly populated cities and dealing with the job crisis. We want to mobilise the public to safeguard birth control initiatives to better our country and enhance maternal health,” said the party’s Secretary General, Dr Vincent Mashinji.

“All children have the right to education. In facilitating this, family plan­ning education has played a great role in protecting young girls from dropping out of school due to early pregnancies,” he said. The party also called upon all men to always accompany their wives to clinics so that they could get to learn more about family planning as an important thing in the current challenging times.

Less than two weeks later, the government sent a letter to organisations carrying out family planning activities in Tanzania to stop them from broadcasting family-planning adverts in local media.

In the letter, which leaked and then spread rapidly on social media, the permanent secretary for the Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Mpoki Ulisubisya, ordered organisations including Family Health International (FHI 360) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to stop airing all content on family planning until it is revised by the government. “The ministry intends to revise the contents of all your ongoing Radio and TV spots for family planning, thus I request you to stop with immediate effect airing and publishing any family planning contents in any media channels until further notice,” reads the letter in part.

Contacted by The Guardian for further clarification, Dr Ulisubisya stated: “We (ministry) want to come up with a standard message for the public on the matter of family planning.”

In a sign of how media and politics are tightly intertwined and indeed highly polarised, reporting of the issue varied greatly between gov­ernment-owned and privately-owned media outlets. The government-owned Daily News ran the headline “JPM touches on family planning”. This was followed by a statement in the article’s opening line that the President had “emphatically stated that Tanzanian parents have the freedom to have whatever number of children they wish provided they are capable of meeting their basic demands.”

In contrast, The Citizen newspaper focussed on the more contentious elements of the President’s speech, citing his reference to foreigners with sinister motives as well as the link he drew between family plan­ning and laziness.

Amnesty International called on the government to remove laws and other barriers to women and girl’s access to information and services they need to live healthier lives. “The Tanzanian authorities must imme­diately stop obstructing access to sexual and reproductive health ser­vices and end the intimidation of anyone providing information about such services, be they health workers, journalists or activists,” said Seif Magango, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.

Tanzania has ratified the Maputo Protocol, which states that women have the right to control their fertility and chose any method of contra­ception, but in practice access to services is limited. A third of women in Tanzania use family planning, according to the UN population fund (UNFPA), with access most limited in rural areas. On average, women give birth to five children.

The United Nations Population Fund, which supports and advocates for improved access to family planning services in many African coun­tries, said its programs were guided by the International Conference on Population and Development agreement, which Tanzania has signed. “A core part of this agreement is to ensure that women have the power and means to access information and services to enable them to decide on the timing, spacing, and number of children,” UNFPA said.

In a fact-sheet published two weeks prior to the President’s rally in Meatu, USAID described their commitment to family planning in Tanzania:

“Family planning is key to Tanzania’s broad-based development, saves lives by helping reduce maternal morbidity and mortality, and increases newborn and child survival rates. USAID began supporting family planning in Tanzania in the late 1980s with a focus on increasing the prevalence rate of modern contraceptives, proving instrumental in building Tanzania’s national program.”

“USAID’s family planning programs are integrated with other health services and non-health programs which contribute to the U.S. Government and Tanzania Government goals of reducing maternal mortality and improving child survival.”

Minister sets ambitious health insurance target: universal coverage by 2020
The government aims to achieve universal coverage of health insur­ance by 2020, according to the Deputy Minister for Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Faustine Ndugulile. Dr Ndugulile was responding to a question in Parliament.

Dr Ndugulile said NHIF was now serving over 17 million people (32% of the population), with efforts to expand to all areas of the country. “So far NHIF is serving millions of Tanzanians, efforts are underway to ensure that all the people are reached by its service,” he said. He added that the Fund continued to implement its strategy to expand its services and enrol members from both formal and informal sectors, including social service for entrepreneurs and children under 18 years.

Dr Ndugulile had already announced a new government strategy to start providing bundles of health insurance – which he described as being similar to packages of mobile phone airtime and other services – to ensure every Tanzanian could afford the service.

He pointed out that a good number of people in lower income brackets were currently left out of the national health insurance service, thus denying them access to quality health care. “Our aim is to ensure that everyone is served. The government is really committed to seeing that health care is improved…this time the government has also increased the budget for the health sector,” he said.

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TANZANIA IN THE INTERNATIONAL MEDIA

by Donovan McGrath

How To Get Women To Trust The Police? ‘Gender’ Desks
(National Public Radio – USA) Extract: How do you get a woman to report to the police that she’s been assaulted or abused if she doesn’t trust the police to take action? That, says activist Jamila Juma, is a serious problem in Zanzibar. Juma is the executive director of the Zanzibar Female Lawyers Association (ZAFELA) … “[Some police officers] don’t understand about rape or they think it’s a women’s issue, so they don’t care,” Juma says… The police agree with her. “Gender-based violence is persistent in Zanzibar but women are not confident in reporting these issues,” says deputy sergeant Mauwa Saleh … Today, over 400 police stations across Tanzania have Police Gender and Children’s Desks, including seven of Zanzibar’s 20 police stations… The gender desks initiative was first proposed in 2009 by the Tanzanian Police Female Network (TPFNet), a professional association formed in 2007 that aims to improve the way the police relate to women in the community… Statistics illustrate the need for these desks. Nearly half of Tanzanian women under the age of 50 say they have been physically or sexually assaulted … The desks aim to make both special handling and privacy available to victims of gender-based violence… (15 August 2018)

UK aid minister hails ‘double win’ of heroin crackdown in Tanzania
(Guardian.com – UK) Extract: British border agents and the Royal Marines have stopped millions of pounds worth of heroin trade across the western Indian Ocean, where the drug is being transported from Afghanistan to east Africa for eventual sale in Europe. The international development secretary, Penny Mordaunt, said the anti-smuggling scheme in Tanzania, funded from the UK’s aid budget, was vital for development in the nation but would also protect the UK and Europe from the effects of organised crime… “This is a win for Tanzania as we tackle the drivers of instability and poverty which hold back development, but also a win for the UK as we are tackling criminal networks that work in both countries and stopping drugs and organised crime coming to our shores,” she said. The Department for International Development estimates that 40% of the heroin being sent across the west Indian Ocean is destined for Tanzania … Since the early 2000s there has been a significant rise in organised criminal groups smuggling Afghan heroin through ports along the Swahili coast from Pakistan and Iran. Most of the drug ends up in Europe, though development officials say an increasing amount is sold directly on the streets of Dar es Salaam and Zanzibar… (Accessed 6 December 2018)

As Tanzania’s LGBT fear for their lives, HIV will thrive
(CNN – USA) In one day, everything changed. Extract continues: … “Since the announcement was made, things got worse,” said the 23-year-old trans woman from Tanzania, who asked to remain anonymous out of fear for her safety… The announcement that she says changed her life was made by powerful politician Paul Makonda, regional governor of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania’s largest city… [H]e vowed to set up a task force to round up and arrest people suspected of being gay… Makonda’s call for all gay people to be reported to him initiated a chain reaction in the country, forcing many into hiding… People already faced a 30-year jail sentence in Tanzania for gay male sex, a holdover from colonial-era laws, mirroring severe penalties for same sex relationships across many African countries… Under the administration of President John Magufuli, rights groups believe, the situation has gotten worse, with the closure of LGBT-friendly clinics and the prohibition of community organizations that do HIV outreach … But the prospect of a civilian task force scouring the streets and giving civilians the power to report people brought a new level of terror… Those unable to flee are instead pushed underground and into hiding, kept from entering the outside world – which blocks their access to health services, such as those protecting against HIV/AIDS… (1 December 2018)

Journalist released from detention in Tanzania
(CNN – USA) Extract: Two Committee Protect Journalists staffers have been released from detention in Tanzania and have left the country … Extract continues: Angela Quintal and Muthoki Mumo were permitted to return to their hotel in Dar es Salaam after being taken to an unknown location and subjected to “several hours of questioning,” according to a news release. Their passports were also returned. “Angela Quintal and Muthoki Mumo travelled to Tanzania to understand the challenges facing the Tanzanian press and to inform the global public,” Committee to Protect Journalists executive director Joel Simon said in a statement. “It is deeply ironic that through their unjustified and abusive detention of our colleagues, Tanzanian authorities have made their work that much easier. It is now abundantly clear to anyone who followed the latest developments that Tanzanian journalists work in a climate of fear of intimidation. We call on the government of Tanzania to allow journalists to work freely and to allow those who defend their rights to access the country without interference.” … (8 November 2018)

Amnesty International condemns Tanzania’s ‘attack’ on family planning
(CNN – Lagos, Nigeria) Tanzania’s government directive to suspend family planning commercials in the country has generated concerns about birth control policies in the country. Extract continues: The government … contacted agencies funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) that are involved in birth control projects and told them to stop running any family planning content in the media, a directive that rights group Amnesty International called an attack on the sexual and reproductive health of people in the East African country… But a health ministry official told CNN the decision was to “restructure and review” media advertisements on birth control… “We are reviewing these adverts, some of them are outdated. Most of the messages are not catering for the new generation,” [Ahmad Makuwani, director of reproductive and child health in the ministry, said]… (25 September 2018)

Why is once-peaceful Tanzania detaining journalists, arresting schoolgirls and killing opposition leaders?
(Washington Post – USA) Extract: … Tanzanian politics has been making international headlines. Journalists representing the Committee to Protect Journalists were detained in Dar es Salaam … The government expelled pregnant girls from school. Paul Makonda, the regional commissioner for Dar, announced plans to round up LGBT people. Eventually, the rest of the government distanced itself from Makonda, but the damage was done… What’s going on? … How have things become so repressive so quickly? The answer lies in the 2015 election of John Magufuli as president. Since then, opposition politicians have been arrested, harassed and beaten. TV offices have been raided and newspapers suspended. Regime critics – journalists, business executives, opposition politicians, student leaders – have been kidnapped, forced into exile or assassinated by “unknown assailants.” … Much of this violence has been kept quiet because it has been local… The government has shied away from open repression, which could lead to losing international aid and moderate voters’ support. Through local officials, Magufuli can use violence – while still being able to distance himself from an “unruly local official” when necessary… (30 November 2018)

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REVIEWS

edited by Martin Walsh

BARABAIG: LIFE, LOVE AND DEATH ON TANZANIA’S HANANG PLAINS. Charles Lane. River Books, Bangkok, 2017. 264 pp., 156 illustra­tions (hardback). ISBN 978-6-1673-3985-6. £40.00.

BARABAIG: LIFE, LOVE AND DEATH ON TANZANIA’S HANANG PLAINS

Land grabbing, the large-scale acquisition of land for agricultural and other forms of investment, is, quite literally, big business in Africa. Dubbed ‘the new scramble for Africa’, this is most often associated nowadays with Chinese commercial interventions on the continent, though it also takes many other forms, some driven by transnational corporations. At national level, it typically involves collusion between powerful government actors and private sector interests, especially when one has captured or is manipulating the other. Tanzania, alas, is no exception, and has its own sorry history of land and conservation grabs, including ongoing examples that have featured in this bulletin. Following land distribution in Zanzibar and forced ‘villagisation’ on the main­land, the single most significant land alienation to make international news was the eviction of Barabaig livestock herders from their pastures in Hanang District to make way for a Canadian aid-funded wheat growing scheme. The negative impacts of this were documented and brought to the world’s attention by Charles Lane, an Australian researcher who first came to Tanzania in the mid-1970s to work as a volunteer and aid worker. Lane had a long association with the country before he chose the Barabaig as the subject of his University of Sussex PhD, a choice inspired in part by an article by Oxfam Press Officer Derek Warren (‘Aid grows a crop of problems’, The Guardian, 2 December 1983).

As its schmaltzy subtitle suggests, Barabaig is very different in style from Lane’s earlier writing about the people of the Hanang Plains and the campaign to redress the wrongs done to them [See TA 24, 35, 47, 51 and 57]. “This is the story of my time with the Barabaig. Not the outcome of my academic research, but a personal account of warmth and wonder, humour and humility, gallantry and gore. I tell it for the Barabaig, for they deserve to have it told. […] They need to be better understood by those who have condemned them as killers and aimless wanderers unworthy of attention. Indeed, the whole world needs to know about the Barabaig, their ancient culture and way of life before it is lost forever. In telling this tale, I hope I have done them justice.”

Barabaig opens with a double foreword by the Director of Survival International, Stephen Corry, and Guardian journalist George Monbiot. Following Lane’s introduction, the text is divided into three main parts. The first two, ‘Early Days’ and ‘Becoming Barabaig’, are lavishly illustrated by photographs from Lane’s fieldwork, and describe his introduction to Barabaig life and some of the most striking elements of their social life in the late 1980s. Lane doesn’t gloss over his cultural naiveté, and there are plenty of self-deprecating anecdotes of the kind that fill anthropologists’ conversations and memoirs, including perhaps too much information about toilet habits.

The third part, ‘Fight for Rights’, about the struggle on behalf of the Barabaig, was the one I enjoyed the most, and I wish that it had come sooner and occupied more of the text. Lane is refreshingly honest about the successes and failures of the campaign and legal proceedings, while a postscript summarises recent developments and his feelings on a return visit with his family. Barabaig isn’t the first coffee-table-plus-campaign book that has been written about a belea­guered indigenous group in Tanzania, and presumably won’t be the last. I’m not a fan of the hybrid format and its uncomfortable relationship with exoticising and ‘white saviour’ narratives, but hope that it does lead more readers to engage with this and other campaigns against the land grabbing that is blighting so many lives. I certainly finished reading this handsome volume wanting to know more, not to mention wishing that I had Charles Lane’s campaigning instincts and flair.

Martin Walsh
Martin Walsh is the Book Reviews Editor of Tanzanian Affairs.

INCREASING PRODUCTION FROM THE LAND: A SOURCEBOOK ON AGRICULTURE FOR TEACHERS AND STUDENTS IN EAST AFRICA. Andrew Coulson, Antony Ellman and Emmanuel Reuben Mbiha. Mkuki na Nyota, Dar es salaam, 2018. 294 pp. (paperback). ISBN 978-9987­08-156-356-5. £30.00 (Available from A.C. Coulson, 8 Innage Rd, Northfield, Birmingham B31 2DX, for £20.00).

This is a very important contribution to any discussion of agriculture, food and rural policy in Tanzania. The quest for a sound agricultural strategy has been a key theme in Tanzania since independence, but a really effective and sustained strategy has proved elusive. As this book shows, the enthusiasm of the post-independence government for mechanised settlement schemes quickly ran into the ground in the late 1960s, and by the mid-1970s had been replaced by very large-scale ‘villagisation’ in which at least five million people moved into ‘ujamaa’ villages. In turn this strategy was more or less abandoned in the late 1980s as the World Bank and other donors’ insistence on total privatisation became the dominant theme. The net result in 2018 is an unsatisfactory mix dominated by large- to medium-scale companies and small, mainly independ­ent farmers.

It is the latter who are the subject of this book, which does a remarkable job in identifying and explaining the constraints and opportunities which small farmers face. This analysis goes on to discuss ways forward from the farm­ers’ perspective, a very rare approach seldom achieved in the many books and pamphlets on African agriculture published over the last fifty years. It is in the tradition of William Allen’s pathbreaking The African Husbandman (1965).

The target audience is students and young practitioners in agriculture in Tanzania and so there are several chapters devoted to the factors of production and basic explanations of the limits to output. However, they are interpolated with fascinating case studies of fifteen individual projects – from the Dakawa Rice Farm, to the Upper Kitete Co-operative, and the Tanga Fresh (dairy) project. These really tell the story of what has worked and what has failed, not neglecting to explain that some success stories – such as potatoes in Njombe

– have been driven by farmers largely on a ‘farmer to farmer’ basis. These cases should make the book of interest to a wider audience of policy makers in government and the donor community.

The impact of new research and technology is a recurring theme. Irrigation is considered in its various forms from low key stream diversion to trickle (or drip) irrigation. Whilst several of these are rated as one of the keys to the future, their limits, set by the physical context, are also recognised. There is a chal­lenging chapter on agricultural research and the role of local and international (e.g. IITA) research centres and their limited impact, mainly ascribed to a lack of mechanisms for dissemination (a debatable point). Scepticism is applied to the role of genetically modified crops which are perceived as being a largely corporate product, a position which downplays the role of CGIAR centres in developing GM crops and the fact that this work is funded by a large range of donors including philanthropic foundations quite divorced from companies.

The book recognises very effectively the external constraints on farmers and points out that the majority of small-scale farmers have at least one family member working in the local economy on either an informal or formal basis. Even with this supplementary income, small farms need to access marketing, credit and ‘extension’ advice – and seldom obtain all three, a major failure of government policy.

It suggests that female-headed households do not necessarily earn lower incomes, in food or cash, than male-headed households and indicates that this distinction, widely considered to be valid in the past, is now breaking down.

The message of this book is that farmers should adopt a blend of proven tradi­tional agricultural technologies (such as intercropping) and modern strategies which conserve the soil (notably conservation agriculture) and new variations of cropping systems which build in trap crops and intercrops to deter pests. Systems which integrate livestock and crops are rightly considered to be essen­tial. At a political level, strategy should be geared to integrating public health and nutrition into food and agricultural policy – as is increasingly accepted worldwide. These issues should make the book of interest to a wider audience of policy makers in government and the donor community.

The analysis and recommendations are clearly applicable across a range of countries, although readers outside Tanzania may be reluctant to engage with the specific case studies. But the authors, all with deep experience, have cre­ated a highly readable book which deserves to have a real impact at the ‘farmer level’ – always their objective.
Laurence Cockcroft

Laurence Cockcroft is a development economist who has worked particularly on African agricultural issues since 1966, including work for DevPan and TRDB in Dar es salaam in the early 1970s. From 1985 to 2012 he was respon­sible for the programme of the Gatsby Charitable Foundation in Africa. He is also a co-founder of Transparency International and was Chairman of its UK Chapter from 2000-08 and has written two books on international corruption.

LEADERSHIP AND CONFLICT IN AFRICAN CHURCHES: THE ANGLICAN EXPERIENCE. Mkunga H.P. Mtingele. Peter Lang, New York, Bern, 2017. xxii + 266 pp. (hardback). ISBN 978-1-4331-3294-0. £69.95.

If abuse occurs within a community, should it be covered up to preserve the reputation of the community, or be exposed to deter recurrence? A highly topi­cal question, and Dr Mkunga Mtingele opts for the latter course in this book: ‘African leaders have to change their way of thinking and their style of leader­ship. Change will not come if the truth is not told.’

His study tells the truth about six conflicts relating to leadership within the Anglican Church of Tanzania (ACT), with occasional comparisons with other countries. His main case-study concerns the marginalisation of the Sukuma, the biggest tribe in Tanzania, in the diocese based in Mwanza. He is well qualified to speak on this topic, with his legal training, and twelve years as Executive Secretary of the ACT, followed by international experience with the United Bible Societies. He surveys sociological analyses of leadership and conflict in the first three chapters and uses them to interpret his field research.

He identifies numerous roots of such conflicts, beginning with the superior attitude to Africans taken by many colonial rulers and Western missionaries and often inherited by their indigenous successors in leadership. When chiefs were abolished in 1963, it was easy for local bishops to step seamlessly into their shoes, at least in the minds of their fellow tribespeople – and people were demanding a bishop of their own tribe which led to conflict in regions of mixed ethnicity. Tribalism seems worse in the church than in the nation.

Imported church traditions also led to conflict, though to a lesser degree, between evangelicals in the hinterland and Anglo-catholics at the coast, though there were also examples of warm partnership. Mtingele describes what he calls ‘the Episcopal-Syndrome’ as ‘ambition for status, wealth, authority and power (SWAP)’. It creates authoritarian bishops and fearful, sycophantic underlings, leading to loss of trust and to conflict. Many ACT clergy live in abject poverty – no wonder they aspire to be elected bishop and may go to any lengths to achieve it – the polar opposite of the model of Jesus Christ. The author resisted many attempts to make him a bishop – no doubt disillusioned by the episcopal models he met. This reviewer believes Mtingele’s research is relevant to Anglicans everywhere. Conflict was aggravated by accusations of witchcraft; by the silence of lay people when clergy were fighting one another; by the inadequacy of diocesan constitutions; and by the use of adversarial methods rather than the African tradition of decision by consensus.

The conflicts he describes, often involving excessive violence, were a public disgrace, emptied the churches, reduced domestic income and international aid and diverted the church from its mission – yet paradoxically sometimes cre­ated new, smaller Christian groups more in touch with their immediate locality, leading to growth.

After pages of gloomy stories, Mtingele concludes with some gems of radical recommendations: better working conditions for clergy; centralised payment of their stipends; limiting tenure of episcopal office; detribalising episcopal appointments; more mergers of the evangelical/catholic traditions. Wisdom indeed, but can a body as conservative as the Anglican Church accept such challenges to the ‘path-dependence’ model which he has shown dominates its practice? The author is working on a basic Swahili version so that his findings may be accessible to Tanzanians. The foreword written by Archbishop Idowu-Fearon of Nigeria calls the book ‘disturbing’ but ‘important … for Africa as a whole and perhaps elsewhere as well.’

This is not, and nor does it claim to be, a balanced picture of the Anglican church. If it were, it would have to mention key figures like Roland Allen, Bishop Tucker of Uganda, Bishop Lucas of Masasi who campaigned vigor­ously, often fruitlessly, against missionary dominance. It would have to identify the East African Revival (1936 onwards) which, utterly indigenous and inde­pendent of, yet influencing, the whole Anglican establishment, brought life and growth to a flawed and sinful church – and knew how to handle conflict. It would also ask if and how the Bible, supposed to be ACT’s guide to life, is used to bring peace.

The many typographical errors are a distraction for the reader and unacceptable in a book at this price.
Roger Bowen

Roger Bowen taught theology in Tanzania from 1965 to 1978 and then at St John’s College, Nottingham. He was editor of the Swahili Theological Textbooks programme and has written Mwongozo wa Waraka kwa Warumi. In retirement he is chairman of the Cambridge Centre for Christianity Worldwide.

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OBITUARIES

by Ben Taylor

Mama Zippora Shekilango

Mama Zippora Shekilango, an education and gender activist, died in September at the age of 80.

Her late husband, Hussein Ramadhani Shekilango, is perhaps more famous, and even has a prominent road named after him (Shekilango Road in Dar es Salaam). But it would be a mistake to see Mama Shekilango as merely her husband’s wife.

For many years, she was a doughty campaigner on gender and education issues. First, she had been a teacher and headmistress at highly successful schools including Zanaki, Msalato, Kisutu, Jangwani and Forodhani.

It was her love of education, for the girl child to have equal chances of education as the boychild, that led her to become one of the country’s leading gender rights activists. Despite coming from a generation where both men and women celebrated patriarchy, she became instrumental in advocating for gender equality. Twenty-five years ago, out of con­viction that gender equality was the way to inclusive development, with others she founded the Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP). The organisation has been at the forefront of the struggle for gender equality in Tanzania ever since.

Zitto Kabwe, the leader of the opposition party ACT Wazalendo reflected on her passing by quoting her: “Without quality education the nation will find itself stagnant and this is why it’s always important to meet and discuss the way forward.”

Saumu Jumanne, of the University of Dar es Salaam, paid tribute: “The knowledge that a teacher passes on to the students, more often than not outlives the teacher. Her values will live on. Hopefully as a nation we can learn from her dedication to teaching, gender activism and all in the spirit of patriotism. To the likes of Mama Zippora, Tanzania always came first in their doings. This is a great lesson to all of us in public services today.”

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TA ISSUE 121

TA cover features Steigler’s Gorge where new dam is proposed (see “Tourism & Environmental Conservation”) photo © Greg Armfield / WWF

Defections to CCM
Govt defends Steigler’s Gorge Project
Obituary – Derek Ingram

A pdf of the issue can be downloaded here

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CHANGES AT THE TOP OF GOVERNMENT AND PARTY

by Ben Taylor

President Magufuli at the controls of the new Air Tanzania Boeing 787-800 Dreamliner (See “Transport”) – photo State House

President Magufuli carried out a minor cabinet reshuffle in July, the most prominent act of which was the sacking of the ambitious Home Affairs Minister, Mwigulu Nchemba. In his place, the President promoted Kangi Lugola from his position as Deputy Minister of State in the Vice President’s Office for Union Affairs and the Environment.

The reshuffle also saw Isack Kamwelwe and Prof Makame Mbarawa swap places as Minister of Water and Irrigation and Minister of Works, Transport and Communication, with Prof Mbarawa moving to the water docket. While not a cabinet post, the President also appointed a new chairman of the National Electoral Commission, Justice Semistocles Kaijage.

This followed a few weeks after the long-standing CCM Secretary General, Abdul-Rahman Kinana, resigned from his post. President Magufuli, as party chairman, moved swiftly to appoint Dr Bashiru Ally as his replacement. The appointment was confirmed by the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC).

President Magufuli, while not mentioning former Minister Nchemba by name, appeared to explain the reasons for his sacking in a speech two days later. He listed a long series of problems at the Home Affairs Ministry, including a controversial TSh 37bn contract where the Controller and Auditor General (CAG) said in his report that the work was not done, despite the payment of billions of shillings. The contract involved a deal between a private company, Lugumi Enterprises, and the police force for the installation of 108 forensic machines in some police stations in the country.

The President also mentioned a multimillion shilling contract for the purchasing of police uniforms that were never delivered, failure to resolve a shortage of fire engines, recurrent road accidents, and the purchase of 777 police cars through a shoddy contract. According to the President, some of the cars were declared to be new while in reality, they had covered over 400 kilometres each.

The list continued with mention of what the President described as an influx of illegal immigrants, as well as haphazard issuance of work permits, misuse of funds by the National Identification Authority (NIDA), and a “lack of scrutiny” in the registration of non-governmental organisations (NGOs). The President said some NGOs were operating against the country’s ethics and traditions.

Dr Magufuli went on to challenge the new Minster, Kangi Lugola, to ensure that prisoners were involved in productive activities instead of staying idle. “In other countries, prisoners are involved in productive activities. The law should also be reviewed, so that prisoners on death row can be deployed productively.”

The appointment of Dr Bashiru – a long-standing supporter of constitutional reform – to the influential post of CCM Secretary General was seen by some as surprise choice. Dr Bashiru, a university academic had previously held only weak ties to the ruling party, to the extent that he felt compelled in his first days in office to publicly clarify that he was, in fact, a CCM member.

Dr Bashiru’s one clear previous link to the party had been that President Magufuli had appointed him as chair of a committee charged with investigating CCM’s assets. The party owns various properties across the country, and should earn a steady revenue as a result, but accountability has been weak and many assets have been effectively privatised. The committee’s investigation was a first step towards regaining control over the party’s wealth, which could then strengthen its financial autonomy and bureaucratic organisation. Having led the investigation, Bashiru will now be in charge of overseeing implementation of the committee’s recommendations.

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OPINION POLL SURPRISE, AND REACTION

by Ben Taylor

A new public opinion survey by Twaweza released in July found that the popularity of President Magufuli has declined sharply. Just over half the population (55%) say they now approve of the President’s performance, down from 71% in 2017 and a massive 96% in 2016. This means President Magufuli has registered both the highest and lowest presidential approvals ratings on record in Tanzania.

The poll also found that a majority of citizens (55%) would vote for President Magufuli if an election were held now, followed by the Chadema candidate, who would secure 15% of the vote. As such, President Magufuli would secure a comfortable majority. It is notable, however, that nearly one in three voters (29%) said they were unsure who they would vote for, considerably higher than similar polls in previous years.

The decline in President Magufuli’s approval rating was sharpest among residents of rural areas, such that the President is now more popular in urban areas than rural.

The CCM secretary of Ideology and Publicity, Humphrey Polepole said President Magufuli’s popularity ratings would increase significantly by end of the year. “I call on Twaweza to conduct a similar study at the end of the year after the government has made significant progress in the implementation of priority projects,” he said.

Within a week of the poll findings being released, Twaweza found itself embroiled in difficulties with the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH). The COSTECH acting Director General, Dr Amos Nungu, wrote to Twaweza, questioning whether the organisation had the proper permits to conduct the poll and giving Twaweza seven days to explain why legal action should not be taken against them.

At a press conference, however, COSTECH leaders found themselves under pressure from reporters, unable to explain what law or regulation Twaweza was alleged to have broken or even whether a COSTECH research permit was required for an opinion poll.

Several activists and analysts spoke out in support of Twaweza. Maria Sarungi-Tsehai, the Change Tanzania director, argued that the saga is politically-motivated. “Twaweza has issued a number of opinion polls on different topics. In fact last year, a very similar poll on people’s views of politics and approval ratings of leaders including the President was published, yet we saw no query from COSTECH,” she said. She described the commission’s move as part of a “clear pattern of reprimand” by government agencies aimed at putting pressure on private actors when there is an impression they are not acting as desired by the authorities.

Fatma Karume, the recently-elected president of the Tanganyika Law Society (TLS), said Twaweza had breached no rules or standards in its recent or previous opinion polling. “I think it’s very important for those chosen to head various government agencies to be well-versed in the laws establishing them, otherwise they would be abusing their power,” she stated.

Semkae Kilonzo, coordinator at Policy Forum, an NGO, said that any attempt at stifling opinion polls is an infringement on the rights of people. “Opinion polls are crucial for a vibrant democracy as they give people the opportunity to air their views and express an opinion about how they are governed,” he said.

A few weeks later, the Executive Director of Twaweza, Aidan Eyakuze, announced that immigration authorities had confiscated his passport and barred him from travelling outside the country. Mr Eyakuze said he could not associate this move with the opinion poll findings or the COSTECH response. “They didn’t tell me the reason behind confiscating my passport or why they didn’t want me to travel outside the country,” he said. However, the seizure of his passport took place a few days after a TV programme to discuss the poll findings aired allegations by one guest that Mr Eyakuze was not a Tanzanian citizen.

[Full disclosure: the author of this piece and editor of Tanzanian Affairs works as a consultant for Twaweza.]

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CASHEWNUTS

by Ben Taylor
A proposal to amend the Cashewnut Industry Act as part of the 2018/19 budget met with a furious response from a section of MPs in parliament. The amendment, part of the Finance Bill 2018, was designed to collect all export levies from cashewnuts in the consolidated fund, rather than providing 65% to farmers through the Cashewnut Board of Tanzania as had previously been the case.

Cashew exports accounted for US$341 million in the year to March 2017, the latest date for which official trade statistics have been published. This is more than the combined earnings over the same period from coffee, cotton, tea, cloves and sisal.

MPs from cashewnut-growing regions – primarily Mtwara and Lindi – spoke vociferously against the change. Nape Nnauye (CCM, Mtama) and Hawa Ghasia (CCM, Mtwara Rural) – both former ministers – spoke strongly. The Parliamentary Budget Committee, chaired by Ms Ghasia, published data showing that the government had failed to remit a total of TSh 200 billion for financial years 20115/16 and 2016/17 to the Cashewnut Development Fund as per the Cashewnut Industry Act requirement that 65% of export levies be channelled back to farmers.

The argument proved to be the trickiest sticking point in the debate over the 2018/19 budget. At one point, the house was adjourned to give time for discussions between the Budget Committee and the Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr Philip Mpango. An opposition MP, Mr Ahmad Katani (CUF, Tandahimba) warned the Minister against visiting Mtwara and Lindi regions. The controversial amendment was eventually enacted.
A few weeks later, however, Ms Ghasia and the Budget Committee Vice-Chair, Jitoson Patel, both resigned from their positions on the committee, for reasons that were not explained.

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