Dodoma — MORE than 300 students received scholarships to study abroad between 2010 and 2012, the Parliament was informed.
Responding to a basic question from Mr Khalifa Suleiman Khalifa (Gando -CUF), the Deputy Minister for Education and Vocational Training, Mr Phillip Mlugo, said criteria for getting the scholarships include age, profession and citizenship.
Mr Khalifa wanted to know how many youths have received scholarships to study abroad and how many of the youth were from Zanzibar and the countries that provide scholarships to Tanzania. Mr Mlugo said a total of 342 students received scholarships between 2010 and 2012 and because Zanzibar is part of the Republic of Tanzania, it is difficult to differentiate which part of the republic the applicant is applying from.
"Scholarships that have been provided by countries to Tanzania are awarded through a competitive process that looks at profession chosen, age and citizenship of the Republic of Tanzania," he explained.
He added that any applicant who fulfils the criteria, especially the profession, automatically they qualify to receive or be shortlisted to be awarded a scholarship, whether they are from Tanzania Mainland or Zanzibar. He noted that a committee comprising members from both Tanzania mainland and Zanzibar are responsible for going through application documents and awarding the scholarships.
"I would like to stress that the opportunities are provided for all citizens of the United Republic of Tanzania and all applicants go through the same criterion of age, profession and citizenship," he added. Countries that provided scholarships to Tanzanian youth between 2010 to 2012 include Cuba, Algeria, Russia, Mozambique, Serbia, Britain, Egypt, South Korea, Macedonia, Turkey, China, German and Oman.
In his supplementary question, Mr Khalifa asked the government to set aside a percentage of the scholarships for Zanzibar youths, noting that there is a danger for youths from Tanzania mainland receiving the scholarships leaving out those from Zanzibar. Deputy Minister Mlugo said the government does not normally set aside a certain percentage of the scholarships for youths from Zanzibar alone.