15 December 2012

Tanzania: In Focus

Expectations for 2013

It is unavoidable to think of 2013 now that stationery and book stores have started to sell 2013 calendars and diaries. The many wedding and baptism ceremonies in Arusha City confirm the near arrival of 2013 since many of such ceremonies are conducted at the end of the year in Arusha traditionally. Thoughts about 2013 can be in the form of expectations.

Expectations are that the economy of Tanzania will continue to grow at a fast rate of six to seven percent with no real positive impacts on peoples' standard of living. Scholars can explain why the economy of the country grows but the increase in income does not make positive impacts on peoples' lives. Economic growth is a positive change in the level of production of goods and services by a country over a certain period of time.

Meanwhile, there are mixed signals about inflation rate for Tanzania in 2013. Some economics scholars predict a decrease to single inflation digits while others suggest that inflation will persist on double digits for 2013. Inflation rate is the percentage increase in the price of goods and services in a country, usually annually.

Environmentalists expect that the Tanzanian government will accept in 2013 the financial offer from the German government to construct a road to Musoma that will serve as an alternative to the proposed controversial road through the Serengeti National Park.

As regards national safety and security, many expect government leaders in Malawi and Tanzania to find a peaceful solution to the boundary conflict along Lake Nyasa also known as Lake Malawi. There are expectations for diplomatic solution to prevail in order to resolve the conflict in 2013.

There are leaders in Tanzania who call for use of detailed and accurate information as a basis for making decisions in government in 2013. It reminds of Dr Wilbroad Slaa who became popular in Parliament by revealing detailed and accurate evidences while addressing issues on nepotism in government. Arguably, Dr. Slaa has made much contribution to democracy in Tanzania by using detailed information strategically when he served as Member of Parliament. Dr. Slaa is now Secretary General of the opposition Chama cha Democrasia na Maendeleo (CHADEMA) Party.

Dr. Harrison Mwakyembe, the Minister of Transport raises expectations about improved and affordable transportation in the country in 2013. You hear of transport by train to be improved in 2013. But talk of town is the recent information that many people will travel by "Fast jets" that charge a cool air fare of Tzs 32,000/- from Dar to Mwanza or Dar to KIA. You hope for the services to become safe and eventually replace many of the up country buses which slaughter and maim passengers by the day.

Arusha City will continue to develop as an education hub in Tanzania and in the East African Region. Expectations are that educators will review objectives of education to suit the current economic situations. Educators can revisit Julius Nyerere's philosophy of education for self reliance, education to benefit rural communities and education to foster a culture of learning. Julius Nyerere was the first President of Tanzania.

In addition, educators can review objectives of education in view of enabling trainees to become more rather than simply to pass examinations and obtain certificates. For example, the University of London International Programme aspires to enable trainees to become more respected, more employable and more inspired.

Many in Tanzania expect the dynamics of politics in Arusha City to continue in 2013 hopefully without causing casualties or loss of lives. Politics in the City has been quiet towards the end of 2012 in the absence of a representative in Parliament or strong opposition in the City Council.

There are expectations that construction of many of the buildings and roads in Arusha City will be completed next year. It is a reminder for Tanzanians to adopt a culture of completing jobs quickly and properly in 2013.

Trend suggests that the Arusha City Council will establish more open spaces in 2013. The first in 2013 will be a new garden along Sokoine Road across the road from the National Bank of Commerce, Arusha Branch. The garden overlooks Naura River.

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