Tabora — CUF presidential candidate Prof Ibrahim Lipumba yesterday promised Tabora residents if elected to form a government, he will ensure that the tobacco crop secures a reliable market abroad.
Prof Lipumba also vowed to give farmers alternative means of generating income to help them improve their economy, especially in the agricultural sector.
He made the promises while addressing a rally at Town School grounds.
He and his running mate Hamida Abdalah said more than 400 million Chinese smoked and so he did not see why the crop should suffer for lack or market.
"Tabora Region has been endowed with good land on which you can grow any crop. You have been famous for tobacco but the current government has forgotten you... ," said Prof Lipumba.
He said the people need a government that will oversee industrial development and economic growth by investing in the agricultural sector and creating a conducive business environment for tobacco.
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"Tobacco is a harmful crop but it has a market and smokers. If you talk about the foreign market, more than 400 million Chinese smoke Tobacco. We must have a government that will stimulate the market in which farmers will benefit from the price," he said.
In addition, Prof Lipumba said the market for tobacco farmers has been destroyed, and some people had piled their tobacco in warehouses due to poor prices.
"There are companies that used to buy this crop but due to high taxes they have failed to operate, many people have lost their jobs due to the closure of these factories," he added.
The presidential candidate said the government should not only focus on developing tobacco but also on alternative crops such as cashew nuts, and sunflowers...
"CUF says we must have a crop such as cashews that our European and American counterparts use most for various ceremonial activities," he said.
Deputy Secretary General who is also the parliamentary candidate for Kaliua constituency Magdalena Sakaya said the country has had many intellectuals but they have not been helping the country in terms of economic growth.
She said many young people were suffering from unemployment after graduating so CUF needs to make a difference and ensure they benefit from their education.
"The people of Tabora have seen life as difficult, students are graduating from college but they are unemployed," she lamented.