THE passing on of veteran politician Job Lusinde yesterday triggered several tributes from mournful compatriots.
The 89-year old Mzee Lusinde, a member of the country's first cabinet after the country's independence, died at the Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) in Dar es Salaam to which he had been referred for treatment.
His younger brother, onetime prime minister, John Malecela, said Mzee Lusinde breathed his last at 5am, at the culmination of an illness stretching from February this year.
Mr Malecela revealed that the body of the deceased would be delivered to Dodoma from Dar es Salaam today, and that information on burial arrangements would be released later.
"The spirit of encouraging other people to forge ahead is one of the attributes for which I will always cherish the memory of my brother," Mzee Malecela remarked.
He said his brother initially studied at Dodoma Primary School and subsequently joined Alliance Secondary School in Dodoma, which was later named Mazengo Secondary School.
He thereafter studied at St John's University. Mzee Lusinde went to Tabora High School and subsequently Makerere University in Uganda.
After completing his university studies, he returned home, his first posting as a teacher being Mazengo Secondary School, following which he was appointed Dodoma District Executive Director.
On the strength of good performance in that role, he was appointed minister in the first post-independence Julius Nyerere Cabinet.
"My brother is credited with many accomplishments and served in several government posts," he said.
Former Dodoma Mayor Peter Mavunde remarked:" I was shocked upon hearing the news of his death because my last encounter was when I escorted him to the airport for flight to Dar es Salaam, after being referred to Muhimbili National Hospital from here in Dodoma, believing that he would come back alive."
He said he knew the late Lusinde since he was an MP for Dodoma constituency.
The former mayor said the nation had lost a unique leader who served during the First Phase Government under Father of the Nation Mwalimu Julius Nyerere.
"He was the only surviving minister of the first Cabinet," he said, saluting the deceased for having been a staunch patriot and an honest man.
He added: "There was no blemish on his performance. He strived to discharge his roles to utmost perfection. He was my role model, I did not expect that one day I would become a politician, but under his watch, I matured steadily, ultimately becoming a mayor for Dodoma. Many politicians benefited from his wisdom."