THE Zanzibar Minister for Finance, Mr Omar Yussuf, has said that development programmes move at a slow pace because development partners have gradually been reducing their support.
He said in the House on Thrsday that many donors and development partners had been cutting their support, a move which affected the flow of funds, thus stalling the plans' implementation. "Our development plans still rely on support from development partners.
We need to change and reduce the level of dependence by working hard and taking family planning seriously to minimize population increase," said Mzee. Giving an example of how foreign support has been declining, the minister said: "In 2010/2011 our revenue collection was 100.6 per cent of the target, while aid from development partners was 64 per cent."
In 2011/2012 it was 96 per cent of the target while the donors' was 63.9 per cent; in 2012/2013 it was 91 per cent while foreign aid was 68 per cent; and in 2013/2014 (for six months) it was 87 per cent, while from development partners it had reached 57 per cent, the minister said.
Mr Mzee was responding to questions from backbenchers led by Mr Saleh Nassor Juma (CUF-Wawi) who wanted to know why many development programmes moved at a snail's pace while others had stalled. The minister said: "We need to double our efforts in work, but also population growth is scaring.
Annual growth of more than 2.8 per cent, equivalent to 40,000 people every year, is too high. This means that demand for space, education, health and water resources increases while supply is small."