Friday, April 3, 2009

Should We Blame CCM for the Current Underdevelopment & Poverty in Tanzania?

A good friend of mine wrote this article few month ago, I think most of his points are still valid for arguments and i like the way he articulate it. I total believe we can develop a strong debate about the whole blame game, who should we blame Ujamaa, Nyerere, CCM, TANU or should we blame everybody? To my understanding if Tanzania want to move forward then we need to learn from our previous mistakes.

This text seeks to examine who is really to blame for the current social and economic misery in Tanzania. Despite of the importance of the recently waged war against grand corruption in Tanzania, the predicament that faces the majority of Tanzanians in terms of poor livelihoods has roots that go way beyond corruption. In other words, the current state of underdevelopment in Tanzania is not solely primed on corruption, as some Tanzanians attempt to articulate. Corruption is a very simplistic way of looking at poverty in Tanzania. Poverty is a very complex phenomenon. It follows that, corruption only complements the underdevelopment process in Tanzania, it does not determine it. The continuation of the opposition parties in the country to use corruption as an ‘alternative development tool’ to uplift poor Tanzanians is a doomed failure. The focus should be on one common enemy that faces both the opposition and the ruling party, CCM – the unfair global capitalist system, that has seen the livelihoods of average Tanzanians worsening off, year after year. The Washington – Consensus led by the World Bank and IMF are largely responsible for the current predicament facing the majority of Tanzanians. Stakeholders in the development process in Tanzania should pay more attention on issues that have long run impact on poverty alleviation, for instance, access to education, healthcare, employment, and rural infrastructure. It is argued in the text that, if the opposition manages to get into power based on their sole strategy that has focused on fighting corruption, they will simply end up misleading its targeted audience – Tanzanians living in plight, and find themselves perplexed, just as CCM has been for a while. It follows that, if the opposition happen to win in the 2010 or 2015 general elections, they will hardly make a difference to the livelihood of an average Tanzanian, especially living in a rural setting. This is particularly the case given the fact that President Kikwete has been very active in eradicating grand corruption in the country. Grand corruption in Tanzania may soon be minimized and CCM with its government could walk away with a sound victory. What will be the next strategy for the opposition parties in Tanzania? More is found in the commentary below.

An average Tanzanian suffers more from poor development policies than the corruption/ufisadi/EPA factor. Tanzanians have lost billions of dollars to payments of foreign debt (loans Tanzania receives/received from rich countries) that had nothing to do with improving the quality of life of an average Tanzania residing in a rural setting.

It has been common practice for the World Bank to extend us with loans with conditions that we use such funds for projects or investments that benefits the World Bank and her allies (rich countries – or the Paris club) more than majority of Tanzanians who live in rural areas. Loans would be given to our government but a large chunk of the funds would end up as (1) Salaries to expatriates brought by the World Bank and IMF to manage development projects that could easily be run by educated Tanzanians. Unlike in the early years of independence when Tanzania had very few experts, today Tanzania has enough economists, finance managers, accountants, and scientists who can easily and effectively manage these development projects. (2) As a conditionality that comes with the loans, our government would be required by the donors to import machinery and other capital goods needed to run such projects. The remaining portion of the loan is what goes to the development projects that seek to uplift the poor livelihoods of Tanzanians. To make matters worse though, it is not CCM or its government that decides where or what sector should the funds go. The World Bank and the IMF are the ones in charge. They make sure the funds go into sectors that will be productive, not for the domestic economy in terms of uplifting the livelihoods of the poor in rural areas, but instead, serve rich countries with cash crops and minerals. Infrastructure and energy projects in the country provide a good evidence of this phenomenon. Major roads being constructed still follow a dendritic pattern as it happened during colonialism. They all aim to move minerals and cash crops faster from the production or extraction centers to the port in Dar-es-salaam, ready for export to rich countries. Despite the importance of the rural economy in all this, one can hardly find roads being constructed to increase efficiency and linkages in the rural economy, for instance, village to village commerce. Power projects too, they literary serve the mining industry, cash crops processing facilities, and the urban elite.

Electrification in rural areas is still less than 2%, not that different from the 1970s. This is disturbing mainly because it is the rural economy that produces cash crops that we export to earn foreign exchange to import the capital goods needed for the economy. Agriculture accounts for about almost half of the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The sector employs about 70% of the country’s labor force; and over 50% of our foreign earnings are from the sector. The rural economy also produces food for Tanzanians living in urban areas. If it was not for farmers in rural areas, we would not have food to feed our children, we would lack funds to import machinery and other capital goods needed for our economy, and we would also lack dollars needed to pay back the loans that are being extended by the World Bank and other donors. Despite the importance of peasants to our economy, the loans that we receive from the World Bank do almost nothing to transform the agricultural sector. Yet, it is common knowledge to almost every official in the World Bank and IMF that agricultural transformation is key to poverty alleviation and economic development.

YES, we still need the World Bank and IMF to assist us but these institutions also need to change the way they conduct themselves in poor countries. The fact that they were not established to help Africa is understood. These institutions were developed in the 1940s for the sole purpose of reconstructing Europe following the Second World War. But since the United States decided to intervene and help Europe through its Marshall Plan, IMF and World Bank had to look for business elsewhere. It is the debt crisis that led to the emergence of these two institutions in poor countries. It should also be noted that, if foreign debt and poverty are completely eradicated in poor countries, IMF and the World Bank will most likely be out of Business. Despite their 24 years of intervention in Tanzania, rural areas in Tanzania are still in the same business of abject poverty.

Kikwete (CCM), Opposition Parties and Development in Tanzania

With all due respect to the waged war against grand corruption in Tanzania, the end product of this waged war will not be a solution to our problems in the long term. This is discouraging because it seems like it is where the opposition parties have put all their eggs. Grand corruption is not the source of the economic and social misery facing majority of Tanzanians. At most, it complements the plight.

Let’s say, EPA has caused Tanzanian a $500 million loss in terms of underdevelopment (the real figure is way less than $500 million), which would have been used to finance health care, education, SMEs etc, how much more have Tanzanians lost in terms of families loosing lives of their loved ones as a result of harsh policies imposed by the World Bank and IMF in the name of development? How many children have lost opportunities to be educated and increase their chances of getting better jobs, increase their productivity, and thus contribute to the development process effectively? How much are peasants in rural areas are losing everyday from the mess in the stagnation in the agricultural sector as a result of inappropriate policies by the World Bank and IMF? How many of our families and relatives have lost their jobs due to privatization and retrenchment of workers in the public sector? How many dollars are lost every single day, from senseless policies in our mining sector that sustains by protecting the interests of investors? Does anyone realize that donors, led by the World Bank and IMF are not commenting much on the gold mining saga? They know they have a hand in it and they will try all they can to make sure no much change is done in the sector. Many of these multinational companies (foreign investors in the mining sector) in Tanzania and other poor countries are in the same business with the World Bank and IMF – to exploit the poor and their resources, same way it happened during colonialism.

In the context of country leadership, there is political leadership and economic leadership. When a leader has influence in both types of leadership, that’s when he or she becomes effective. Otherwise, a lack of one often leads to a nightmare in terms of uplifting the livelihoods of the poor. President Kikwete came with a lot of promises to improve the livelihoods of the poor, some of which he is still working hard to turn them into reality. But one should understand that despite his will, President certainly has control of political leadership, but he largely lacks economic leadership based on reasons outlined earlier. So Tanzania is divided into two main leadership spheres – Political leadership under Kikwete and Economic Leadership under the World Bank and IMF's representatives.

One may ask – Tanzania is blessed with abundant coal resources that can generate electricity in the country for at least 50 years without any major interruptions unlike now.

Mtwara, Ruvuma, Iringa are blessed with abundant coal reserves, yet these are among the least electrified regions in the country. According to one insider working for the World Bank, at least in the short run, the institution is there to make sure that no other sources of energy are developed in the country. This is because International Finance Corporation (IFC) has a stake in the Songas project. It follows that, until the loan extended to songas is paid off, the World Bank will not allow Tanzanians to build new sources of energy from abundant hydro and coal sources. Hydro and Coal are cheaper to run than gas – based energy. This makes alternative energy in Tanzania a threat to World Bank’s interests - if we go coal or more hydro, Songas will run out of business and the World Bank won’t be able to recuperate its funds.

The World Bank and IMF are in the front line on things that really don’t have any importance to an average Tanzanian in the long run. They always stay away from issues that really matter to Tanzanians such as – more jobs, health care and education. One other fundamental question becomes: Why did the World Bank and IMF force the Tanzanian government to cut off spending on education and healthcare beginning 1980s? This has brought severe social consequences to an extent that it may affect the political process in Tanzania in a negative manner. To an average Tanzanian, poor health services and education is the fault of CCM and its government. Why can’t the World Bank and IMF make it clear to Tanzanians that the current quandary that they face in terms of poor social services etc is not really the fault of CCM’s or the government alone fault and instead, at least a shared responsibility, in terms of ineffective policies, between the World Bank/IMF and partially, the government of Tanzania?

The current support on grand corruption by the World Bank and IMF are based on two main reasons, all of which are really not in the interest of an average Tanzanian: 1. EPA funds are literally the tax payers' money of rich countries that came to Tanzania and other poor countries as loans. Given the current global economic crisis which has necessitated rich countries to find ways to bail out their economies, how would one explain to citizens of the west on how EPA money has been wasted? 2. Good governance (less corruption) always spurs foreign direct investment. The more foreign investors come to Tanzania in mining and other sectors, the more these mining companies benefit rich countries at the expense of more poverty on Tanzanians. We always hear about foreign investors bring jobs and transfer of technology, but this doesn’t really happen. All major positions in these foreign companies are held by foreigners. Also very few jobs are being generated. It is rare to find a foreign company having more than 500 Tanzanians as employees.

If one may notice, the World Bank does nothing to discourage the tax exemption by foreign investors in Tanzania. For instance, in Sheraton transformed into Movenpick in the eyes of the World Bank and IMF; Holiday Inn has transformed into Southern Sun…, and all is done in the name of development. Tanzanians fail to understand that this is not the fault of the government. There is an institution under the World Bank known as MIGA – Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency, whose objective is to put pressure on governments in poor countries to exempt taxation on foreign investors. So governments, like the Tanzanian government - has no choice but follow these rules because if you tax an investor, he/she will decide to go invest in another country where MIGA policies are practiced. And if you lose investors, most likely, the opposition will come up with an argument that the government is not doing the right thing that’s why we don’t get enough investors. Solution to this problem is for the governments all across Africa to come up with one voice and tell MIGA that we no longer want to exempt taxes because it costs us millions of lost revenues and that if you as an investor decide to go to a neighboring country, let’s say Kenya, because our country, Tanzania, no longer buys your strategy, you will be met with the same policy. It is saddening to see that despite the exemption on Taxes on foreign investors, they seldom provide Tanzanians with anything that is useful to improve their livelihoods. For instance, there is no transfer of skills and technology from investors to Tanzania entrepreneurs, top leadership positions in most foreign companies is held by foreigners, and these companies provide employment to very few Tanzanians relative to huge among of qualified job seekers in the domestic job market. Mobile Phone Operators are the ones that should have been in the front line to generate thousands of jobs because they make money upfront. About 95% of mobile phones users have pay-as-you-go accounts, so you pay for the service before you get it.

An average Tanzanian does not understand why his or her livelihood is not improving. This makes them become very vulnerable when a political party manipulates the truth as a way to recruit more members to the parties. Corruption alone is not the reason why Tanzanian is facing an economic crisis today. More pressing issues include unemployment, healthcare and education. When was the last time anyone heard a member of parliament from CCM or opposition press the donor community or even the government on these long term issues? Have we sent our MPs to go and talk about corruption in 3, 4 parliament sessions? For instance, if corruption/EPA is taken care of today and all culprits are put in jail, what will be the policy of the opposition parties in Tanzania? Many Tanzanians believe that in order for CCM to be more effective, it needs to be challenged in terms of development policies (holding the World Bank and IMF constant). But all should happen in the context of an understanding of the two types of leadership discussed earlier – Political Leadership and Economic Leadership. Given the kind of short sighted strategies that are being pursued by the opposition parties in Tanzania at present, it hard to imagine how these parties will succeed, even when they succeed get in power. One doesn’t need to be a rocket scientist to understand why many Tanzanians, some well educated, still choose to remain as CCM supporters. When you sit one on one with a leader or supporter of an opposition party and ask how they want to change Tanzania, all you hear is EPA, ufisadi, and CCM has been in power since 1961 but Tanzania is still poor. Zitto Kabwe has good leadership traits, he does not seem to understand that the mining companies that he is fighting against - there are those that are worth almost one third of Tanzania’s GDP when one looks at their income from global operations. Two mining companies might be worth half of the entire Tanzanian economy. Now before one embarks into strategies that seek to reverse the current policies in the mining sector, how does one get around the fact that these Multinational companies are financially very strong and have full support of the World Bank and IMF? Kabwe and others need to first have better understanding on the current dynamics of poverty and underdevelopment in Tanzania before they come up with effective strategies to tackle the problems. However, since he is now in that committee elected to oversee amendments in the mining act, he must have realized what the real problem is. But given the good leadership traits that he has shown together with his commitment to bring a difference to the livelihoods of the poor in Tanzania, many still believe that, overtime, his committee will deliver.

Nyerere and Development in Tanzania

It has become common practice for many Tanzanians to blame CCM for the current poverty situation in the country. Fine, we all are aware of the fact that CCM, as any other party, has weaknesses too. However, one forgets to understand that poverty and livelihood hardship on most Tanzanians has been more severe after 1985 - when the late Nyerere left office. Prior to that, unemployment, health care and education were seldom problems in Tanzania. And one should always remember that Nyerere took over country that was a colony, and he inherited a new political, social, cultural and economic identify that did not exist prior to colonialism. For instance, Wachagga, Wahehe and Wazaramo, were all conducting their economic and political endeavors independent from each others. It is colonialism that brought these ethnic together as Tanganyika for the purpose of exploiting their labor and resource to benefit the rich countries of today. Therefore, it was the responsibility of Nyerere to bring together the 100 plus ethnic groups and start afresh the political and economic development process as a single nation - Tanganyika and later on, Tanzania. Socially and Economically, Tanzania made good progress in the 1961 – 1970s periods.

It was after 1985 when we started to witness how Structural Adjustment Policies erasing most of the social progress that Tanzania had achieved. Today, the social consequences of the World Bank and IMF policies are still very difficult to comprehend. In the process, many Tanzanians lost their jobs due to privatization; many others were forced into the new domestic economy – the informal sector. Also many of our children were no longer able to attend schools and many more lost their lives due to lack of health care services. Many Tanzanians fail to understand that CCM has not been in control of the economy since 1985, it is the World Bank and IMF. One quick note: we should always remember that as Tanzanians, we all share the responsibility for what happened prior to 1985. Despite the failure of some of Nyerere’s policies, he sacrificed to make Tanzania a better place to live. We would not be doing justice if we continue to say - CCM is to blame for underdevelopment since independence, as some have been doing it. Nyerere made us a proud nation still envied by many other nations. For instance, during Nyerere’s rule, Tanzania had one of the highest literacy rates in Africa.

Mtei and Chadema:

Edwin Mtei was the founder of Chadema. Since early 1980s, he opposed Nyerere’s development policies when he was the governor of the Bank of Tanzania (BOT). If one may recall, Mtei and Nyerere disagreed on the country's path to development, which led to Mtei’s departure as the governor of BOT and eventually an economist with the IMF in Washington. IMF supported Mtei’s vision of Tanzania and that’s the vision that IMF and World Bank have forced Tanzania to pursue since 1985. Chadema and other opposition parties are lucky that they are not in power today because they would most likely be in the same position that CCM is in today – a country where the majority of the people still live in abject poverty. After the introduction of multi party system in early 1990s, Mtei returned to Tanzania and established Chadema. Initially, many Tanzanians believed in Mtei’s vision because, after the demise of the Soviet, many bureaucrats and policy makers were excited with the idea of trying the alternative path to development i.e. free market policies. However, experience during the entire period (1985 - 2009) that the IMF and World Bank have been in charge in economic leadership of Tanzania (24 years), the life of an average Tanzanian has not improved. The past 24 years (1985 - 2009) have witnessed an average Tanzanian worse off than the earlier 24 years under Nyerere (1961 - 1985). In principle, Chadema's policies (if we take into account of the fact that Mtei as its founder favored IMF's approach to development and was hired by IMF so that when he goes back to Tanzania, he would pressure for changes in development policies) has been implemented since 1985.

If Chadema had won in the 1995 elections, the party would have implemented the same policies Tanzania has been pursuing in the post 1985 era. It is certain that if one goes to ask the World Bank and IMF officials on this matter, they will be kind enough to agree, as professionals. Again, all due respect to Chadema, but the party needs to come out clean and be open to Tanzanians about this fact. It should be understood that whether it was mwinyi, mkapa, kikwete, mtei, lipumba, or mrema in power, in 1985, 1995, 2005, Tanzania would have been pursuing the same development policies - in agriculture, mining, health, education, privatization, etc. It should also be understood that, by tradition, the World Bank and IMF do not have separate policies and aid conditionality for ruling and opposition parties, example CCM and opposition parties in Tanzania. Regardless of what party is in power in Tanzania, IMF and World bank’s interest is on the liberalization of the economy so that foreign capital, products and service are able to reap profits with knowledge that the domestic private sector cannot compete; and pressure the government to cut down spending on important sectors such as education and healthcare so that government’s revenue can be spent more wisely – to pay off the debt that Tanzania owe rich countries.

Lipumba and Development in Tanzania:

All due respect to Professor Lipumba, a well educated economist from one of the most prestigious education institutions in the World - University of Stanford. This is where the likes of Bill and Hillary Clinton were educated. It should be noted that Lipumba was once an economic advisor to president museveni of Uganda on IMF and World Bank’s policies to that country. Some years ago, Lipumba was very optimistic about Structural Adjustment Policies and how those would change the lives of the poor in a positive way. There is no doubt that to a large extent, these policies have made Tanzanians, Ugandans and many other citizens of the poor world poorer. Professor Lipumba has been busy telling Tanzanians in his political rallies that their current predicament is a result of poor policies by CCM. However, Lipumba is well aware of the fact that external factors are largely to blame for the failure of development in Tanzania. He should be honest that even if CUF wins in 2010 or 2015 elections, his party will continue to pursue the same policies that CCM is pursuing now simply because given our scarcity in development finance, it is the donor community led by the World Bank and IMF that will be in charge of the economic leadership. CUF will be busy with the political leadership sphere. Solution to this lack of balance between political and economic leadership is for the country to come up with policies that would enable Tanzania balance its budget and also pay off the debts that the country owes to the World Bank and other foreign entities. This should be the focus of the ruling party CCM as well as opposition and a more practical approach towards the solutions should involve a consensus between CCM and the opposition. It would be useless if CCM and the opposition fight the same enemy separately. Political parties in Tanzania should try to avoid getting divided and ruled by the IMF and the World Bank just as our traditional chiefs were divided and ruled by the colonial governments. Neo – colonialism is in practice, and the opposition should be aware of that fact.

In recent years, the World Bank and IMF have been publishing reports after reports on how Tanzania's economy has been improving in the past 8-9 years. For instance, the average annual GDP growth in Tanzania has been close to 6%, something that Tanzania last experienced in prior to 1980s. No one disagrees that economic growth is key to poverty reduction. However, economic growth that does not equate social development in terms of education, healthcare and employment is useless growth. The World Bank is well aware of the fact that the poverty levels in rural areas today are not much different from the 1970s period. It’s only in urban areas where poverty levels have decreased. However, the reduction in urban areas is still very modest. Majority of Tanzanians, 70% plus still live in rural areas, many of them living under One Dollar a day. This is a major concern. Stakeholders in the development process in Tanzania (World Bank, IMF and, Tanzanian government and donors) should consider the rural economy as a top policy priority if Tanzania seeks to achieve the Millennium Development Goals as well as the Vision 2025.

In recent years, there has been a lot of talk by the World Bank and IMF about boom in the mining and construction sectors in Tanzania and how these have contributed to impressive economic growth. But really, who is this Boom for? For instance, the boom in the construction sector has been a reflection of the various infrastructure projects in the mining and cash crop producing areas. In large part, roads and bridges are not constructed to bring about linkages and efficiency in the domestic economy. The World Bank is doing almost nothing to emphasize on the importance of transforming the agricultural sector. Tanzanians are facing food shortages in a country where self sufficient in food can be achieved and even food surplus can be exported. To further elaborate on how the World Bank and IMF really don’t care about the well being of an average Tanzanian, IMF once stated (some years ago) that university education in poor countries such Tanzania is a luxury, thus governments should not bother to waste their resources in higher education. No wonder a few days ago, the World Bank was quick to intervene on the University of Dar-es-salaam current crisis, stating that the government was doing the right thing. But the government is most likely well aware that what is happening is not right because Nyerere pursued opposite policies and results were good. Today, the government, whether it is under CCM or the opposition has no option expect to follow what the World Bank and IMF asks it to do. Tanzania will not be able to balance its budget in the next foreseeable future, thus it urgently needs funds from the World Bank and donors finance its development process. In the 2008-2009, donors’ contribution to the country’s budget was less compared to the previous period but no one is really sure on how this will play out.

Also, over the past few years, there has been a lot of talk from the World Bank about the success in terms of the development in the education sector, primary education in particular. This is based on the record breaking enrollment rates in primary schools. This increase in enrollment has been a result of good patronage by the World Bank to allow the government to use some of its funds to develop the education sector. However, if one may ask: Why did the World Bank and IMF forced the government to abolish spending in education in the 1980s only to allow the government to start spending money again in the sector in 2000? If the two institutions now believe education to be key to poverty alleviation, why didn’t they allow the government to continue spending on education throughout the period? How much have been lost during the period? It is obviously more than the funds that have been embezzled under the EPA scheme. And the World Bank is busy bragging about these so called achievements in primary education sector without realizing that in actual sense, what matters more i.e. the attendance rates in primary schools are much lower than enrollment rates. It is really discouraging to see our economic leader – the World Bank, consider number of new pupils in primary school every year as a success and pay little attention to the other end of the education continuum i.e. number of students completing primary education, number of students completing secondary schools and number of students getting access to university education in Tanzania. Various data such as the latest Household Budget Survey reveal this problem. Where is Chadema, or CUF on this?

As long as Kikwete continues with his pace to fight grand corruption problems, the current strategies being pursued by the opposition will hardly make a difference to the lives of average Tanzanians, especially in rural areas. The opposition needs to sit and learn/understand three things: First, how the global capitalist system works, second, the difference between political and economic leadership in a poor country as Tanzania, and third, the difference between bureaucrats and politicians, in the context of CCM and the Tanzanian government. This would be a good beginning towards an understanding of how policies that aim to improvement the livelihoods of the poor Tanzanians in terms of healthcare, education, employment and so forth, can be strategized and pursued. As it stands right now, it’s no different to Simba and Yanga politics on who is a better striker, who will make it to Maximos’ list or who has a chance to play for the English Premiership.

Many Tanzanians doesn't know how the global capitalism system works and they are quick to blame the ruling party – CCM for all the failures. For example, Tanzanian youths who pursue science subjects and don’t have a chance to learn about their colonial heritage and economics of the capitalist system, they become vulnerable to false statements by opposition parties that CCM has been in the driver’s seat for over 40 years and nothing has changed in Tanzania. This may only be a valid argument if an alternative solution and a roadmap towards that solution is provided. There are also Tanzanian youths who have not gone through an education curriculum that teachers them about their colonial heritage. They too often become prey for the opposition parties that seek to manipulate the truth about our current state of underdevelopment. Also there are many other Tanzanians who were or are born in the Diaspora (America, Britain, and Canada etc). Many of them don’t have a chance to understand our history simply because, either they did not have a chance to learn about their heritage or they don’t put much effort to examine how we as a nation got here in the first place. When they hear Obama talking about CHANGE in America, they want that CHANGE to be emulated in Tanzania which is a totally different context.

Just like the opposition, CCM has its own weaknesses as we have seen in the previous sections. However, it should be noted that even with zero corruption in the Tanzania, Tanzania still has a long way to go in terms of completely alleviating poverty in Tanzania. But success begins by understanding how we got here in the first place. It is this understanding that will give the opposition respect and legitimacy in the eyes of Tanzanians. Otherwise, as things stands today, there is no much difference between a party like Chadema and CCM – both seek to improve the lives of Tanzanians in areas such as healthcare, education and employment and it is not as easy as it sounds because success can only be derived within the context of both, the political leadership and economic leadership, not just the from the political setting.

Lastly, CCM and the opposition both have effective and ineffective leaders. By definition, a leader is an individual who inspires others and guides them towards achieving a common objective. By this definition, we can easily identify good and bad leaders, both in CCM and the opposition. More importantly, the opposition should understand that in Tanzania, there is a big difference between a bureaucrat and a CCM politician. This separation came into existence after 1995. Opposition parties should also be aware of the fact that most major decisions in the government are made by bureaucrats, not CCM leaders. With bureaucrats, their job does not really require them to publicly declare their political affiliation. For instance, today, it is possible for Tanzania to have a principal secretary in a Ministry who is really not there as a CCM member but a member of any other opposition party, or even an independent. In this context, such a bureaucrat may be corrupt and use the position to advance his/her own interest, the interest of the ruling party or of the opposition party, without any of us to find out. A good example is the current phenomenon in the country whereby there have been a lot of leakages of government’s documents that were deemed confidential. If one may ask, how does the opposition get access to these sensitive documents if it wasn’t for the opposition to have their own people - i.e. Bureaucrats as either, members of their partiers, opponents of CCM or simply, independent minded? But when a bureaucrat is found corrupt, the opposition is quick to blame CCM as the one that is being corrupt.

It is time for us to sit down and reflect.

God Bless Tanzania.


Che Solasi said...


I categorically disagree with most of the contents of this article and I'm very skeptical of the rest of it. It seems the objective of its author was to bash on the IMF and World Bank (nothing wrong with that) but without any substance to support it's core arguments. Another thing that bothers me is the clear passive gesture of protecting the leadership of their inept and almost catastrophic policies that were ushered in with poor decision-making.

OK. We know IMF and World Bank are in it for their economical profit at the very least. We also know our country has needs in many areas to facilitate development. So whatever agreement/arrangement made has two willing partners which are the IMF/World Bank and our leaders on our behalf. It's not as if we were/are facing nuclear annihilation or somebody was forced to signed with the threat of a bullet on his head. While I'm not defending the IMF and World Bank, I think the author forgets that the decision to do business with them was made by our leaders. If our leaders knew it wasn't beneficial to the welfare of the state, why did they sign on it? And the mismanagement of the resources provided whether through a loan or any other sort of aid was not by IMF or World Bank.

While the article question the capability of an average Tanzanian to understand the really reason behind lack of development and continuing poverty, I don't understand why he/she relegates corruption to mere nuissance when it compounds all the problems stated in the article because its an epidemic. So I don't have a problem when the Opposition or CCM brings the issue of Ufisadi because by solving it, we'll have one less problem to deal with. By dismissing the issue, we would be lessening or justifying a greater crime of one/few citizen ripping off all of us. For me corruption can and should be given the merits of treason of some degree. Yet I don't believe corruption can be completely eradicated but it can be reduce by starting from higher up.

On the point of bureaucrats and CCM, last time I check most Ministers were MP who were affiliated with some party or another. You can't be a member without following some guidelines of that membership and that in itself brings an image that correspond to your affiliation. So if you behave badly, that image will become associated with you affiliation: case point G. W. Bush and how he helped Obama win the U.S. presidency.

I do agree though that, African countries should form a unified front to deal with unacceptable policies of IMF, World Bank or any other entity/country that can be detrimental to the interest of Africans. I think the problem will be misguided ambitions among member countries and/or selfish aspirations of few individual.... but there's always hope.

Iddi Mwanyoka said...

Che Solasi,
I also argued about the fact that eventhough the framework was from IMF/World Bank, but who enforced the policies? Did those who enforce the policies act in the manner of efficiency and responsibility? Did we closed all loopholes and channel the resource to the right sectors?

I tend not to believe on blaming the whole thing to IMF and World Bank, eventhogh they played a big role. I think our leaders played the huge part to cripple Tanzania development. The irresponsibility among our self contributed to some extent to drive us to this ditch.

I believe on blame everybody notion. I shared my fifty cents in this mess that we're into.

Che Solasi who should we blame?

Anonymous said...


Sorry, but it seems to me the whole article is out of whack, recycled, irresponsible, irrelevant and dismissive particularly on the issue of corruptions, How dare someone would right that one off! it also sounds to undermine your own assesment on the role of IMF/WORLD bank you are trying to vilified.

Imagine, our country mines contracts decision or any other decision concerning our future, your future, your children future, signed off in the Hotel lobby for a PENNY, are you kidding me ? Not just that, but all government sectors, stink with corruptions, which results a fine mind, responsible people decision not prevailing because of corruptions, ie. include mine, Dont dare stop me with your own essay corruption on my conscious, even my tax shillings count nothing to your judgement, except that of INVESTORS, changing name like KINYONGA to put their TAX PAYMENT to VOID, while the poor man get whacked with the TAX, I pay more tax than MOVENPICK/aka Kilimanjaro(Dont know even their names this days) hotel I guess? So Mr/Miss article author who made that decision, I didn't, who have to reverse/impose change on those decision ? So when the poor man get incentives tax cuts on his/her small business?, and at the same time, we leave the BIG corporate earners in TAX RETENTIONS, till when ? and thats where you undermine my feelings about this government irresponsible, by always scapegoating the problem on others? chadema, cuf and others ??

CCM undermines us as citizens, it institute those so called investors to high status, and we become prisons on our own country. I guess I agree with you on this or may be you not? You are totally confusing me!

I dont have time for this halecunations, but I will only agree on one point about IMF/World Bank, we should have a united FRONT, against this entity when implimenting the so called ECONOMIC BLUE PRINT on our countries... but the rest of the article, it is just lots of DING DONG!

IMF and WORLD BANK REBIRTH WITH WHOPPING 1 TRILLION DOLLAR!, I guess we wont stop them with their agenda, for a foreseable future but, we CAN ENFORCE THE CHANGE, if we put our mind onto it.

Iddy, by the way who wrote the article, I reserve my suspicious and judgement for now?? and that thing with european/american babies of Tanzanian origin, Man! where did you get that one from ????? are you blaming them as well ?? LOL

By Mchangiaji

Anonymous said...

even obama speak up against corruption, just yesterday on the town hall meeting in Sta. France.

I know some of it, playing politics(thats another point of discussion), but he didn't undermine corruptions for sure!

This is what he had to say.....

Q Thank you, Mr. President. My name is Matthias Kutsch (ph). I'm a student from Heidelberg, Germany. (Cheers, applause.) And my mother tongue is German, but my French is not good enough, so I ask my question in English.

You mentioned in your speech that we are a lucky generation; we live in peace, we live in democracies and free states. And we are very pleased to have this situation in Europe. But this is not the case all over the world, even not in Europe. Look to Belarus, for example. There's an autocratic regime.

And so my question concerns the many children all over the world that live in poverty, under human rights violations.

They have hunger. They have no education and other problems. So what is your strategy, Mr. President, to solve this problem?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, it's an excellent question. And the -- first of all, I think one of the things that we should be very proud of, from the G-20 summit yesterday, was that we made a significant commitment to additional resources through the IMF and other mechanisms to provide assistance to emerging markets and poor countries that, as I said, are bearing the burden of a collapse in the financial system that they had nothing to do with.

The problem is so many of these countries had export-oriented markets. And when the economies contracted in our developing nations, it made them extremely vulnerable. You know, you have a country like Botswana, which is actually a well-managed country that has made enormous progress. But their main revenue generator is diamond sales. And they have literally seen the diamond market collapse, in part because they couldn't get trade financing, in part because the demand in developed countries has -- has dropped off.

So we started to make progress there. Our most important task right now is helping them get through this crisis. Over the long term, though, we've got to have a strategy that recognizes that the interest of the developed world in feeding the hungry, in educating children, that that's not just charity; it's in our interests.

There is not a direct correlation between poverty and violence and conflict and terrorism, but I can tell you that if children have no education whatsoever, if young men are standing idle each and every day and feel completely detached and completely removed from the modern world, they are more likely, they are more susceptible to ideologies that appeal to violence and destruction.

If you have no health facilities whatsoever in countries in Africa, these days a pandemic can get on a plane and be in Strasbourg or New York City or Chicago overnight. So we better think about making sure that there are basic public health facilities and public health infrastructure in those countries, because we can't shield ourselves from these problems.

So that means developed countries have to increase aid. But it also means that the countries who are receiving aid have to use it wisely.

And my father was from Kenya, and when I traveled to Kenya, I had just been elected to the United States Senate. Everybody was very excited and, you know, they greeted me and -- you know, as if I was already a head of state. And, you know, there were people waving and lining the streets. I went to speak at a university, and I had to be honest, which was, America has an obligation to provide Kenya help on a whole range of issues. But if Kenya doesn't solve its own corruption problem, then Kenya will never grow. It will never be able to provide for its own.

And so there's nothing wrong with the developed nations insisting that we will increase our commitments; that we will design our aid programs more effectively; that we will open up our markets to trade from poor countries -- but that we will also insist that there's good governance and rule of law and other critical factors in order to make these countries work.

We spend so much time talking about democracy. And obviously, we should be promoting democracy everywhere we can.

But democracy, a well-functioning society that promotes liberty and equality and fraternity, a well-functioning society does not just depend on going to the ballot box. It also means that you're not going to be shaken down by police because the police aren't getting properly paid. It also means that if you want to start a business, you don't have to pay a bribe. I mean, there are a whole host of other factors that -- that people, you know, need to -- need to recognize in building a civil society that allows a country to be successful. And -- and hopefully that will -- that approach will be reflected not just in -- in my administration's policies but in the policies that are pursued by international agencies around the world.

Okay. Good. (Applause.)

Anonymous said...

Where 1 Trillion will be spent on.
*$500bn for the IMF to lend to struggling economies.
*$250bn to boost world trade
*$250bn for a new IMF "overdraft facility" countries can draw on
*$100bn that international development banks can lend to poorest countries
*IMF will raise $6bn from selling gold reserves to increase lending for the poorest countries
Source: BBC

The last point is of very interest to me, i dont want to prejudgemental, and sound to me the same gold we are selling them for a peny, it is now recycled to us as stimulus package to help us/africans economy.

Man, They are very smart people, setting the price, keep the price floating and growing, while other commodities are struggling, because they keep the gadamn thing in the bankers, for their own survival and growth, I MUST GIVE IT UP TO THEM, THEY ARE SMART!, are we not going to do the same guys?

Anonymous said...

You know i didn't read all that ...its Colin Powell friendly

will be reading reading comments

Anonymous said...

With all respect i support some of the arguments, however i do oppose to say CCM is immuned of this mess that Tanzania is into. I believe CCM should be held accountable for this mess we're into. Prior to 1980 I believe to blame CCM is not fair. However, post 1985 CCM is part of the nightmare. We had enough educated people to look at the policies, we also had the know how power.

IFI played a big role to cripple Tanzania Economic development with their scum policy and projects. However, CCM supported those scums policies without provides any checking and balance. Some of the leaders from CCM benefited from those scum projects which were initiated by World Bank and IMF ( they sent their children to western college, they enjoyed every moment while many Tanzania faced downturn economy). CCM had opportunities even to asked simple questions, but they didn't. IFI used their economist to run stupid projections about the economy and CCM leaders presented those scum forecast to Tanzanian.

IFI played their part to get us into this mess, but CCM press the button which killed us. Look at the rudder scum for instance, IFI opposed the whole things because Tanzania doesn't need such a thing. However, with CCM bunge and CCM government we end up to purchased a damn thing.

I do understand some of the projects came from IFI were quid pro quo. But the questions remain what about efficiency and effectiveness? Where is check and balance? The DO GOODER tell us what to do, but how about those things that are in our contro? How about good education for kids, do we need to blame IFI for that? How about scrapy roads? Do we need to blame IFI? How about poor policy and law crafted at the bunge? Do we need to blame IFI for that? How about escalade of HIV/AIDS do we need to blame IFI for that? How about craft of the budget?
I can go on and on.

I think IFI get us into this mess, but CCM press the red button and kill us.
That is all
Mdau wa Pugu Kajiungeni

Fredrick Mboma said...

CCM can never evade the blame. It lands squarely on them.

Now we are hearing of MIGA... so where was CCM to announce of MIGA problems BEFORE signing investment deals?

Oh I know, they CCM are the smartest ones who know how to handle everything.

Discussing MIGA with the opposition or the general wananchi would be stooping low.

When will CCM understand that Gold is way more valuable than paper currency?

With gold we could even do barter deals with countries like China where they can mine gold and build some true wealth for us such as roads, bridges, sea and air ports.

The West (Canada and South Africa) don't really need gold that much that's why they have the audacity of giving us crappy deals.

Guys wake up, has anyone read the report "Breaking the curse" produced by Action Aid?

I have uploaded it on the following link for anyone interested (

Bottom line is we are the biggest losers.

Out of $3000,000,000 worth of gold sold over previous 4 years, Tanzania Treasury has received a mere $1,000,000.

Pity. Shame.

We are losing big time, because our leaders don't know how to negotiate. They assume the World Bank and IMF know better than the people of this country.

If we don't gird up our loins and act like patriots how on earth can we expect MIGA to help us??

Sio siri kila nikifikiria napata uchungu sana.

Hii gold ingetosha kabisa kutupatia infrastructure za nguvu kama Johannesburg ambayo tunaishobokea.