CHIEF Secretary Ambassador Ombeni Sefue has said the pace of the country's economic growth will depend largely on strong partnership between public and private sectors.
"If we don't partner, we cannot build a strong economy even if donors keep on supporting us," Mr Sefue who is also the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Tanzania National Business Council (TNBC), said on Tuesday night. He said the time has come to unlock the growth potential and set priorities needed to sustain all economic foundations.
"This time around, we must build a strong economy and you will count upon my commitment to achieve this as the council's executive committee chairman," Mr Sefue said at a special function organized by TNBC to bid farewell to his predecessor, who served the council for six years.
The ambassador described his predecessor (Mzee Philemon Luhanjo) as a committed leader who did a lot to ensure the private sector grows and contributes significantly to the national economic growth and development. "You did a lot of heavy lifting under your leadership," Mr Sefue said, noting that nobody has a monopoly of wisdom.
According to the chairman, the public-private forums were important in building the national economy and that deliberate efforts must be taken to ensure public and private sectors work together as true partners. "I take this opportunity to assure you that the council will continue to be active, innovative and work as a team," he said, adding that Mzee Luhanjo was a good conveyor belt in the council made up of members from both public and private sectors.
Speaking at the same function, the Council's Co-Chairperson and Chairperson of Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF), Ms Esther Mkwizu described Mzee Luhanjo as an exceptional leader committed for the growth and development of private sector.
"Since the establishment of TNBC in 2001, the working relationship between public and private sectors has improved steadily," she said, adding that he strongly advocated the Kilimo Kwanza initiative. Earlier in his remarks, Mzee Luhanjo thanked council members for hard work and co-operation extended to him during the time he served as the executive committee chairman until he retired last December.
"To ensure the private sector grows at the right and required pace, civil servants must continue to change their mindsets and see investors/businessmen as their partners in transforming the economy," he said. Mzee Luhanjo said the country has the public-private partnership policy, if implemented smoothly the country's economic growth speed will triple and have a multiplier effect in the economy.
"I take this opportunity to you all for gifts given to me. This shows that you really recognized my contribution in civil service. After my retirement I decided to return to my homeland (Njombe) engaging in farming activities," he said.