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Monday, December 21, 2009

MATUNDA YA DHULUMA NA UNYANYASAJI WA JAMII YA WAFUGAJI HANANG'

Kwa mara nyingine wiki iliyopita Taifa la Tanzania limepata doa jingine katika kile tukiitacho amani na utulivu, hizi ni nyimbo tumezokuwa tukiaminishwa na kuimba kila uchao bila kujali kuwa katika uhalisia wa mambo hatuwezi kujidai kuwa kisiwa cha amani na utulivu katika mazingira ya unyanyasaji, dhuluma na ubinafsi uliopita kipimo wa baadhi miongoni mwetu. Katika kudhihirisha kuwa hali si shwari baada ya dhuluma ya miongo takribani mitatu jamii ya wafugaji wa Hanang katika nyanda za malisho za Bassotu wameamua kuvunja ukimya na kuionyesha Tanzania na dunia kuwa sasa wamefika ukomo wa subira na uvumilivu. Wazalendo wa Hanang’ baada ya kilio chao cha muda mrefu kwa serikali ili warejeshewe mashamba yao yaliyopokwa mwishoni mwa miaka ya 70 na serikali ili kuanzisha kilimo cha ngano tena kwa kutumia nguvu wameamua kuvunja ukimya.

Ili kuyaelewa matukio haya vyema ni bora kurejea nyuma na kuangalia historia ya eneo lenye mgogoro. Mashamba ya Gawal, Setchet, Murjanda, Gidagamowd, Mulbadaw, Bassotu na Warret yanapatikana katika iliyokuwa nyanda ya malisho ya Bassotu (Bassotu Plains), Serikali ya awamu ya kwanza chini ya Baba wa Taifa Mwalimu J. K Nyerere iliamua kuyachukua maeneo haya kwa ajili ya kuanzisha kilimo cha mashamba makubwa ya ngano chini ya mradi uliokuwa ukiendeshwa na Shirika la Taifa la Kilimo na Chakula (NAFCO) kwa msaada wa Serikali ya Canada kupitia shirika lake la Msaada la Kimataifa CIDA, takribani ekari 100,000 zilichukuliwa kutoka kwa wakazi ili kutimiza lengo la kilimo cha ngano.

Kimsingi nyanda hizo za malisho zilikuwa zikikaliwa ama kutumiwa na jamii za wafugaji wa Ki Datoga na Ki Iraqw. Serikali iliwaondoa kwa nguvu wakazi wa maeneo haya ili kupisha utekelezwaji wa mradi huo, kijiji kama cha Mulbadaw kiliathirika kwa sehemu kubwa na wakazi wake ambao kwa mujibu wa utafiti uliofanywa na Profesa Shivji na Dk Tenga na ripoti yake kutoka katika Jarida la Africa Events la Disemba 1985 ikiitwa Ujamaa mahakamani, kijiji hicho kilichosajiliwa kama kijiji cha Ujamaa kwa mjibu wa sheria ya Vijiji na Vijiji vya Ujamaa ya mwaka wa 1975, ni mojawapo ya vijiji katika eneo hilo vilivyoathrika na upokaji huo. Wakionyesha kupinga unyang’anyi huo wakazi wa maeneo hayo walifungua kesi kupinga dhuluma hiyo, mojawapo ya kesi maarufu ni kesi ya Mulbadaw Village council and Others V National Agricultural and Food Corporation (NAFCO) na kesi nyingine ni kesi maarufu ya Mzee Yoke Gwaku na wenzie.

Mahakama kuu kanda ya Arusha katika uamuzi wake wa awali iliwapa ushindi wakazi wa maeneo hayo na kuamuru NAFCO kuwapisha waendelee na shughuli zao za uzalishaji mali, NAFCO walikata rufaa Mahakama ya Rufaa ambayo iliamua kutengua maamuzi ya Mahakama Kuu na kuwapa ushindi NAFCO, na kilichofuata baada ya hapo ni kuondolewa kwa nguvu katika maeneo hayo chini ya usimamizi wa FFU na maboma na makazi yao yakichomwa moto. Wafugaji wa Ki Datoga (Wabarbaig) wengi waliondoka katika maeneo hayo na kuhamia maeneo mengine nchini ambayo mpaka leo bado wanasumbuliwa wakiambiwa warejee walikotoka. Bahati nzuri kwa wakazi hawa shirika la NAFCO kama yalivyokuwa mashirika mengineyo ya serikali kutokana na usimamizi mbovu yalishindwa kujiendesha na hivyo kufilisika, Wa Datoga na wakazi wengineo wa nyanda za Bassotu walichukulia hiyo kama ishara ya Mwenyezi Mungu kujibu sala zao dhidi ya dhuluma waliyokuwa wametendewa, mategemeo yao ilikuwa ni serikali kuwarejeshea rasmi maeneo yao waliyonyang’anywa bila ridhaa yao mwishoni mwa miaka ya 1970.

Kilichotokea ni kwamba zama za utandawazi zilikuwa zimeshapiga hodi na mawazo ya serikali katika awamu zilizofuatia hayakuwa tena yakilenga zaidi wananchi na hivyo wafugaji na wakulima katika maeneo haya wakajikuta wakiambiwa mashamba tumeshindwa kuyaendeleza wenyewe hivyo wawekezaji watatusaidia kuyaboresha vyema. Wanavijiji wanaozunguka mashamba hayo wakaamua kuanza harakati upya kushinikiza mashamba haya kurejeshwa kwao, serikali baada ya mvutano na mapambano marefu ikaridhia kurejesha mashamba mawili kati ya saba. Sasa hapa ndio hasa tunapaswa kuwa makini, mashamba haya baada ya kurejeshwa yalirejeshwa katika mamlaka gani? Kimsingi katika suala la usimamizi wa ardhi serikali za vijiji kwa maana ya halmashauri za vijiji ndio zenye jukumu la usimamizi na kwa ushirikiano na Mkutano mkuu wa kijiji waweza kupanga namna watakavyotumia ardhi yao. Lakini kinachoendelea ni ukiritimba ule ule wa siku zote kwa serikali kuu kupitia Mkuu wa Wilaya na mara nyingine Halmashauri kutaka kulazimisha matakwa yao yasikilizwe.

Kinachoonekana hapa ni serikali ya wilaya kutaka kushinikiza serikali za vijiji husika kufanya kile ambacho wilaya inataka, kwa upande mmoja inaonekana kiini cha tatizo ni uamuzi wa wilaya kuwahamisha wanaowaita wavamizi wa Mlima Hanang’ hawa ni wakazi waliokuwa wakiishi katika nyanda za miteremko ya Mlima Hanang’ ambayo serikali imeamua sasa ni sehemu ya hifadhi ya Mlima wa Hanang’ maeneo mbadala serikali ya wilaya iliamua kuwa ni katika haya mashamba mawili waliyorejeshewa wanavijiji wanaoyazunguka mashamba haya.

Lakini hii hasa si hoja ya msingi, kama serikali ina nia ya dhati ya kuwapatia maeneo wakazi waliohamishwa kupisha hifadhi ya Mlima wa Hanang’ suluhisho sio kuwapambanisha wao na wakazi wa vijiji vilivyorejeshewa sehemu ya maeneo yao bali ni serikali kuona sasa pana haja ya kuhawilisha shamba ama mashamba mengine na kuwapatia wakazi hawa, hii ndiyo bila shaka maslahi ya kweli ya Taifa. Kuna hoja ya kwamba viongozi wa siasa wapite kuhamasisha wanavijiji wakubaliane na hoja za wilaya, kwanini viongozi hawa wa kisiasa wasiishinikize serikali ama kuishauri serikali ihawilishe mashamba mengine zaidi na kuwakabidhi wanavijiji waliohamishwa toka mlimani ama wengineo wenye mahitaji ya ardhi katika eneo husika?

Mwisho kabisa, enzi za kutumia mabavu na nguvu nyingi zimepitwa na wakati, hizi ni zama za kukaa pamoja na kuyaongea matatizo yetu kwa uwazi, fukuto la Hanang’ ni mfano tu wa matatizo mengi katika suala zima la ardhi yanayotukabili na yatakayoendelea kutukabili kama tutakuwa hatujajipanga katika suala zima la namna tunavyotumia ardhi tuliyokuwa nayo na vipaumbele vyetu. Ni vyema sasa tukaanza kuwaona wanavijiji kama wakala wa mabadiliko na maendeleo badala ya vikwazo ama vizingiti, wakiwezeshwa nao wanaweza kufanya mabadiliko, wakulima na wafugaji ndio wanaoubeba msitakabali wa taifa letu kwasasa, kama tunashindwa kuwapa fursa na nafasi inavyositahili tusishangae kesho tukasikia katika maeneo mengine pia wameingia msituni, kwani ilianza na Arumeru, kisha Hanang’ kesho sijui itakuwa wapi lakini tunafahamu yapo maeneo mengi ambayo kero za kweli za ardhi za wananchi zinafunikwafunikwa na watawala katika ngazi hizo.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Experiencing Land Reforms in Tanzania

From the outset let me categorically state that I am not trying to give an academically grounded analysis of land reforms in Tanzania nor would I dare challenge any existing analysis of the land tenure reforms. I am rather giving my personal experience of the reforms, particularly on the implementation of the Land Act no 4 of 1999 and Village Land Act No 5 of 1999. To fast track the implementation of the LA and VLA the Ministry of Lands and Human Settlement Development (MLHD) has gone as as far as to devise a strategic plan.

The Strategic Plan for Implementing Land Laws(SPILL) is tasked to survey, issue certificates of title to villages and urban land and setting up local registries for land documents. With all these efforts and associated reforms, particularly the Local Government Reform Programme (LGRP) and the Legal Sector Reform Programme (LSRP), where are we now? What is the status of the reforms and what are the practical evidence on the ground?

My observation is basically based on my practical engagement with villages in various districts where Land Rights Research and Resources Institute (LARRRI), popularly known as HAKIARDHI, through the Programme on Land rights and Village Governance is working with Local Government Authorities (LGAs) through sharing experiences on land tenure system and raising awareness on the relatively new laws and their implications to small producers as well as through charting what best can be done to secure the security of tenure of small producers such as peasants and pastoralists. My engagement with village leaders and ordinary villagers therefore forms the basis of my analysis of the status of the implementation of these laws of which, by 2009, a decade would have elapsed since they were enacted. Connected to the implementation of the said Acts is the whole question of investment in village lands and the massive influx of investors, both foreign and local, to the village areas.

My first observation is that many villages still continue to be recognized legally through the Local government Act (District Authorities) of 1982 as ammended in 1999. In order to be recognized in the new land regime, they must undergo surveys and demarcation and hence issued with a Village Land Certificate (VLC). Since the whole process involves adjudication, many villages have not yet been issued with VLC. In many areas when looking at the level of implementation of the VLA one will find out that Districts have managed to give circulars only to guide villages in establishment of Village land Councils. Many link security of tenure with CCROs and the pseudo beliefs that once issued with a CCRO villagers will be able to access bank loans, the concern of the villagers is therefore one the guarantee of security of tenure and second other benefits that might be associated with having a CCRO.

Members of the Village Land Councils are not trained hence not aware of their duties and as a result make decisions against the law. The primary purpose of establishment of these council is mediation, that before the dispute escalates at least those involved settle their differences basing on the customs and traditions of the given place. But since they do not have any training they tend to operate just like any other court of justice including punishing the aggrieved person by fines etc.

Another significant feature is undue interference of village authorities by District level and National or central government authorities. This is manifested in a way investment is guided. In the two districts their is scramble for land as both local and foreign investors frequents the villages with introductory letters from central and local government asking village authorities to assist investors with land for investments.

Since the villagers are not aware of the various provisions in the Village land Act and the Land Act and how land transactions is done find themselves alienated from their land once they grant concessions. The status of the land changes from village land to general land under the Commissioner for lands. But few villagers are aware of this anomally, many villagers as a matter of fact authorize transfer from village to general land blindly. It is clearly stated in the village land Act that the village assembly can allocate up to 50 acres, above that they can only recommend their willingness to other organs responsible with land administration such as the district council and the ministry responsible through the overall incharge of land administration the Commissioner for Lands.

In a final analysis the reforms has succeded in exposing to the large extent the villages or rural areas to market forces, now it is a matter of making another analysis to find out whether this has been for better or for worse, but experience shows and case studies from districts near by major towns and even in peri urban areas shows negative impact as far as villagers are concerned, the other aspect that the reforms sort to address was the question of hoarding and land speculation, how far has this succeeded?

What we are observing now is the increasing trend in land hoarding, in some cases villagers are now demanding their land back after realizing that the so called investors are not real investors as they have not developed their land unfortunately for villagers is that once they realize this it is too late for them as other processes especially of transfer are at high levels of decision making. This is another room for future conflicts between villagers and investors especially when villagers are aware of the procedures guiding land issues in Tanzania especially when they master the basics in the Village Land Act.

Last but not least is a crisis of governance at ward level, this is in regard of the ward tribunal, the confusion here is to whom and where is the ward tribunal accountable. It is a land tribunal under the DED, it falls under the primary court for non land cases, appeals of land cases are send to District Land and Housing tribunal. In some areas the question that came out was on who is responsible for financing the tribunal? It is clear that the Assistant registrar of villages who happened to be the District Executive Director is responsible for the budgets and financial implication of the ward tribunals and Village land tribunals but in as far as support to these organs is concerned we still have a long way to go.

The dysfunctional organs of government, if we are to reap the benefits of reforms have to be revamped, the site of development must be the village, much as we want to get rid of peasants and nomad pastoralists development from above will never help in transformation of our societies and eradication of poverty, if the system of administration of land works in favor of the small producers chances are that they will transform not necessarily revolutionary but rather gradually and in a way a more prosperous and poverty free Tanzania will be realized, much as we need foreign investment this should not be at the expense of small producers, peasants unlike what many critics argue are also responsive to the market, diversification will always happen in as far as they reap surplus from their harvests and sell them to the available markets.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

What about a stimulus package for the education crisis?

Denial is a psychological strategy that humans use to deal with crises. It works up to a point. There comes a time when it utterly fails as a defensive mechanism. Then an implosion occurs.

The recently announced Primary School Leaving Examinations (PSLE) results give a glimpse of the ongoing implosion in the education sector. More than 50 percent of the students who sat for PSLE this year failed. This, we are told, is a decline by 3.32 percent from last years’ results.

According to the Minister responsible for Education, this decline is due to mass failures in Mathematics and English. Nearly 21 percent of the students passed the former. Slightly over 35 percent passed the latter. Ironically, 69 percent passed Kiswahili, this being the highest pass rate.

What is surprising is that despite this steady decline in the past two years or so we haven’t publicly announced that there is an education crisis. Gone are the days when our educators could publicly assemble and boldly tell us to our face to stop denying that there is no education crisis.

Those were the days prior to the Primary Education Development Plan (PEDP). “In early July 1999”, they reminisced, “a firm decision was made by the University of Dar es Salaam Convocation Executive Committee to organize, in early October 1999, a Symposium on The Multi-dimensional Crisis of Education in Tanzania.” It was well attended. Policymakers were there. So were Professors of Education. It received wide coverage and stirred a public debate.

At that time it was stark clear that there was a national crisis. Tanzania was reaping the fruits of the crisis after sowing Structural Adjustment Programmes’ (SAPs) seeds that sapped us of our resources to meet the costs of basic social services. SAPs had introduced cost-sharing after structuring the state to cut down its budget for those services which include health and education.

Commenting on this restructuring one year earlier, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere had this to say: “At the World Bank the first question they asked me was `how did you fail?' I responded that we took over a country with 85 per cent of its adult population illiterate. The British ruled us for 43 years. When they left, there were 2 trained engineers and 12 doctors. This is the country we inherited. When I stepped down there was 91-per-cent literacy and nearly every child was in school. We trained thousands of engineers and doctors and teachers. In 1988 Tanzania's per-capita income was $280. Now, in 1998, it is $140.”

Mwalimu – the teacher – further commented: “So I asked the World Bank people what went wrong. Because for the last ten years Tanzania has been signing on the dotted line and doing everything the IMF and the World Bank wanted. Enrolment in school has plummeted to 63 per cent and conditions in health and other social services have deteriorated. I asked them again: `what went wrong?' These people just sat there looking at me. Then they asked what could they do? I told them have some humility. Humility - they are so arrogant!”

Times have indeed changed. In a way the relatively successful implementation of PEDP made us lower our crisis alarms. Of course we had the likes of HakiElimu that had to pay the ‘interdiction’ penalty for publicly questioning PEDP’s unsuccessful provision of quality education. But in general we have not been as alarmed as we ought to be or as we were in the wake of the global financial crisis. What is happening in education demand(ed) such a response.

So here we are with more than half of those who sat for PSLE being condemned to failure because of our denial. Yet we are busy reviewing the Education and Training Policy of 1995 with the aim of introducing, as a medium of instruction, a language that pupils failed miserably.

We even forget that there was a time PSLE rates increased dramatically simply because we added more weight on a language that is more familiar to most of our children. ‘Primary School Leaving Examinations: A Study on the Increase in Pass Rate’ that was conducted by Tanzania Education Network (Ten/Met) and HakiElimu in 2008 reveals that. It is based on PSLE data.

Its following finding on one of the two reasons for the increase in 2004 is quite revealing: “One, making English and Kiswahili into two papers increased the weighting of these papers from 33.3 percent to 50.0 percent and decreased the weighting of the other two papers from 33.3 percent to 25.0 percent.” This simply means that more students passed because of Kiswahili. It is their home language, the one they practically use to interact with their environment on a daily basis.

The following finding from this study is more telling: “In 2006, 70.7 percent of the children passed PSLE, meaning that these children were competent to enroll in and benefit from secondary education. Yet only 48.0 percent of the children passed the English paper. This means that at least 22.7 percent of the children are eligible to enroll in secondary schools even though they failed English, the language of instruction in secondary education.” What a ‘false start’!

My preliminary analysis of the PSLE results for 2009 reveals that this is the same story, albeit more bleak. It reminds me of students in one of the secondary schools we recently visited. They point blank said, albeit in Kiswahili, ‘the English language is difficult therefore teachers should mix it with the national language.’ What a plea for accessing knowledge in understandable ways!

The education system is already in a crisis. Continuing with a confused language policy will change the crisis from an implosion to an explosion. We better come up with a stimulus package even if that entails ‘importing’ teachers who can teach English properly as a second language.

Thanks to the government the Ministry responsible for Education has acknowledged that not all of the funds allocated to schools reach them. Its 2009 Public Expenditure Tracking Survey (PETS) has revealed that only 87 percent of the budget was received by Local Government Authorities (LGAs) responsible for primary schools. What reached the schools could be less.

This is a proof that we need to stimulate our education system. It needs more funds. And PETS.

© Chambi Chachage - The Citizen (15 December 2009)

Monday, November 23, 2009

A Golden Opportunity? A Documentary about how Tanzania is Failing to Benefit from Gold Mining!

Click http://vimeo.com/7690704 and View:

The effects of multinational gold mining on local communities in Tanzania. While Canadian and Australian mining companies reap the profits of record high gold prices, local residents suffer forced displacement, and remain destitute.

A documentary presented by the Christian Council of Tanzania, Norwegian Church and DundasFilm
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Canadian mining firms face abuse allegations

A private member's bill aims to impose controls on powerful Canadian mining companies that operate overseas

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/729147--canadian-mining-firms-face-abuse-allegations
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What is Norway oiling in Zanzibar?

Zanzibar is back on the national and international agenda. Of course it has always been on the agenda. But it’s a long time since it was such a mysterious agenda.

For a whole week we have been treated with puzzling news. ‘What are Karume and Seif up to in Zanzibar? queried The Citizen. ‘Z’bar’s Strange Bedfellows’ quipped the Sunday Citizen.

What I found particularly surprising is not “the recent rare talks between Zanzibar’s erstwhile political foes, President Amani Abedi Karume and the opposition Civic United Front leader, Maalim Seif Shariff Hamad” (Sunday Citizen 15 November 2009). Why should I be shocked while I know if nothing, or anything, is not done now Zanzibar will explode? When? 2010!

Then what did I find surprising? Is it the claim that not even the ruling party let alone the presidency knew about the secrecy behind the meeting? Or is it the assertion that our friends in ‘war on terror’ and piracy are behind the new-found unity in Zanzibar? Could it be the oil factor?
Well, what I found intriguing is the energy that our partners in development, Norway, are putting on this agenda. I am particularly startled given the fact that the Ambassador himself has taken a lead on this. He has “been the busiest and most visible over Zanzibar” affirming that “Norway strongly encourages” Karume and Seif’s “efforts to bring lasting peace to Zanzibar” (Ibid).

Surely we know why Tanzanians or Zanzibaris need lasting peace in Zanzibar. But what about Norwegians? Why should they be interested in such peace? For the sake of humanity? Maybe.

The clue to why our friends in development are so interested in our peace is found in what they have been up to in the past week. Tellingly, their Minister for Environment and International Development was “the first international personality to send a congratulatory message, a few hours after news of the meeting emerged” (Ibid). The Ambassador even crossed the ocean to meet the President of Zanzibar. He also met the Minister responsible for Union Matters.

More tellingly the Norwegian Embassy “conducted two separate workshops for Members of the National Assembly, and the Zanzibar House of Representatives to sensitise them on oil exploration and drilling for an impending Bill on the matter” (Ibid). The possibility of oil discovery in Zanzibar has caused a lot of animosity between those who want its revenues to be shared as a Union Matter and those who don’t. Why, then, is Norway so interested in this issue?

The official website of the Tanzania Petroleum Development Corporation (TPDC) at http://www.tpdc-tz.com/ list 17 licensed Oil and Gas Exploration Companies that operates in Tanzania. Out of these only one is from Norway. Its name is Statoil Asa. Ironically, it is not operating in Zanzibar. Rather, it is operating on what is refered to as Deep Sea Block Number 2.

On the map this block is close to Mtwara and Lindi. According to this company’s official website at http://www.statoil.com/ its total area is “11,099 square kilometres, and it lies in water depths of between 400 and 3000 metres” off “the coast of Tanzania in the Indian Ocean.” If a Norwegian company is thus far removed from Zanzibar who then is really involved in Zanzibar?

Apparently the company that is operating in Zanzibar/Pemba is a Canadian one. It is known as Antrim Resources among other names. Shell International from Holland is also operating albeit in the Deep Sea Blocks Number 9, 10, 11 and 12 which, in a way, surrounds Zanzibar. As a matter of fact the whole on and off shore of the Indian Ocean in Tanzania is licensed for oil/gas exploration and companies from as far as Australia, Brazil and the United Kingdom are involved.

It is thus quite clear that there is an international scramble for oil and gas in this Eastern board of Tanzania/Africa. This, I contend, is the one of the main reasons why Norway is so interested in what is going on in Zanzibar. As history has taught us Zanzibar has always been a strategic area.

Commenting on this historical legacy, Abdulrahman Mohammed Babu said: “A country like Zanzibar was quite strategic in superpower manoeuvres because of its historic role in influencing events in the region.” This is the Zanzibar that attracted a whole Empire to move its capital from Muscat into it. It’s the Zanzibar that is facing the shaky Middle East. It is a Zanzibar that is a corridor to Somalia, the new zone of piracy. Who wouldn’t want to control such a Zanzibar?

Surely Norway, as a country that has used oil among other resources to develop, wouldn’t want to be a loser in a battle for the soul of Zanzibar. Neither would ‘America’. Nor would Tanzania.

© Chambi Chachage - Published in The Citizen & The African Executive

Friday, November 20, 2009

Between the Lines

Between the lines
Is our history about today, or…
About our yesterdays and tomorrows
About conventions, memories or imaginings
Is it standing still, in motion or aping
Mine, theirs or ours…?

Depends on the teller
And the subject of the telling
Is the conqueror or vanquished
The author or the audience
Subject or the object…
Of it’s telling?

Which key do we turn?
To tell myth and reality apart
As they spin yet another yarn?

Which memory do we depend on?
To not believe in too many lies
Conscious, sub-conscious, rational or creative

Do we have what it takes, to read between the lines?

Demere Kitunga, 31st October, 2008

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Waiting for Power: Citizens’ Plight during Energy Crises

It has become so predictable. This thing we call ‘power rationing.’ We had it in 2006, 2007 and 2008. It is here in 2009. If the yearly trend continues then we shall surely experience it in 2010.

If we have forgotten the past then we only have to glance at the dates of the following front page news stories from The Citizen to get a glimpse of how this power rationing is such a vicious cycle: “‘Tanzania 2006: Power’ Crisis dominated headlines” (29 December 2006); “Another power crisis as Songas turbines collapse” (25 September 2008); “Power Crisis: Tough times ahead – No solution in sight as sabotage suggestions angers Tanesco boss” (13 October 2009).

For some strange reasons the major power crises tend to emerge toward the end of the year. Some claim it is because of delayed rains. The moment you blame it on ‘Mother Nature’ you let humans off the hook. But isn’t being human all about taming nature? And, as experts of climate change insists, aren’t we the ones who affect those rain seasons with environmental degradation?

From what has been going on there is no way we can claim human agency is not behind this power tragedy. When we survey more cover stories from The Citizen this is what we get as evidence of why this is a man-made problem that needs humans to take responsibility: “Business want power shedding compensation” (19 March 2007); “Tanesco ordered to pay Sh190.8m to paper mill” (12 September 2007); “Emergency power supply contract that never was” (19 March 2008”; “Rationing ends as power supply normalises” (The Citizen 20 September 2008).

Humans, as a restaurant owner plighted with power cuts told me the other day, never get used to problems. We are not used to the power rationing problem. At the individual level we might have devised coping mechanism to partially deal with it but that does not mean we are really used to it. Every time we experience power cuts we suffer and complain. We also try to offer solutions.

When such a crisis occurred, or rather made to occur, in October, 2006 a concerned citizen wrote an open letter to President Jakaya Kikwete. He told him how the crisis was affecting his attempt at self-employment. His hope was that such a leader who was/is committed to creating a million jobs for (young) Tanzanians will take note of how the power crisis was/is a setback to that goal.

Three years down the line self-employees are still bearing the brunt of the on and off blackouts. For instance, in the beginning of the year the parliamentary committee responsible for public investments’ accounts found out that a salon could incur a cost of up to an additional Tsh. 60,000 per day during rationing. According its chair, Zitto Kabwe, in his press statement on the current crisis, the rationing curtails the capital of small-scale entrepreneurs and thus impoverishes them.

Companies also suffer: “Power woes: Cement Firm incurs over Sh2bn loss” (2 February 2007). The national economy as whole has been suffering: “Revealed: Power crisis to cost nation Sh815 billion” (30 November 2006); “Power disconnection cost Govt, firm Sh 540m a day” (22 November 2007). Even Tanesco is losing out - ‘Tsh 2 million or so per day’ says POAC’s chair!

Over the years, however, we have been coming up with ‘Band-Aid’ solutions. We can also see this reflected in The Citizen’s cover stories: “New power tariff soon” (29 December 2006); “40 percent power rise will kill industries” (23 September 2007); “Consumer body says Tanesco’s new connections charges are illegal” (19 November 2007); “Govt is rattled as MPs reject Power Bill again” (20 March 2008); “Power sector for partial liberalisation” (19 April 2008).

A survey of The Citizen’s headlines on the IPTL, Richmond and Dowans solutions is also self-revealing: “Richmond says power equipment ‘in flight’” (21 October 2006); “Tanesco: Dowans yet to commission 20MW” (19 January 2007); “Dowans: Dr. Rashid throws in the towel” (7 March 2008); “Ex-Richmond power deal may be extended to 2012”; “Tanesco now halts Dowans contract” (1 July 2008); “Court blocks sale of Dowans plant” (20 December 2008); “Switch on Dowans, IPTL now, businesses tell govt (21 October 2009).

As I am writing this article the power cuts seems to have eased. Perhaps this is because of “Kikwete’s order on IPTL” (22 October 2009). This order, depending on how you view it, came in the wake, or as a result, of the businesses’ call and Zitto Kabwe’s statement referred to above. I want to be so happy that the power cuts have been cut regardless of who has done it. But can I?

Politically speaking, is it possible to happily enjoy this power when a permanent solution to the recurring crisis has not yet been found? Economically speaking, is it possible to be happy about it even though it will cost us a lot in the long run? Morally speaking, how can it be possible to enjoy this power when there seems to be a shady cloud around it as the court process indicates?

These are the kinds of questions that make me think that perhaps there is more into the word ‘power’ that we use interchangeably with ‘electricity’. No wonder the veteran journo, Karl Lyimo, thus rhetorically admits: “It seems I’ll never understand this even if I live to know the difference between power, energy and electricity!” Power cuts means we are a powerless people.
In my Physics class I was taught that power is defined as energy over time. I was also taught that the law of conservation of energy states that you can neither create nor destroy energy. What you can only do is transform it from one form to another. And that is indeed what we have been doing since Uhuru: transforming mechanical energy from moving water into electrical energy.

Human agency is what has done this transformation. It is this same agency that has transformed fuel energy from generators to produce electrical energy. Surely the same agency has the power to harness the heat from the sun and force from the winds and turn them into electrical energy.

With all these forms of energy in our country how can we afford to be powerless? Why can’t we have the same kind of belief that inspired Barack Obama to powerfully declare: “We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories”? What is stopping us from being powerful enough to also conclude: “All this we can do. All this we will do”?

Power is about the distribution of resources. Let’s redistribute our energy resources. Yes, we can.

© Chambi Chachage - Published in The Citizen & Pambazuka News

Monday, November 2, 2009

Barua ya Wazi kwa Mheshimiwa Mkapa


Barua ya wazi kwa Mhe. Benjamin William Mkapa, Rais mstaafu

Mheshimiwa Mkapa,
Assalam Alaykum.
Nakuamkia kwa heshima na taadhima. Natumai u mzima wa afya, wewe na familia yako. Nakuombea kila la heri na mapumziko mema, pamoja na majukumu yako mengi na mazito ya kimataifa.

Mheshimiwa, nimeshawishika kuandika barua hii baada ya kusoma kwenye tovuti (http://businessmirror.com.ph/home/opinion/14843-the-sudden-demise-of-neoliberal-economics.html) maoni yako ambayo yamenukuliwa na mwandishi wa habari Roberto Savio akiandika juu ya kifo cha uliberali mamboleo katika gazeti la Business Mirror la 19 Agosti 2009. Umenukuliwa ukisema:

“We privatized everything the state had. Everything was bought by foreign capital because we had no national capital to compete. The foreign companies almost always closed local businesses, which were not competitive, transforming them into distributors of foreign products and driving up unemployment. The experts of the World Bank and the IMF predicted that this would happen, but they told us: Now the influx of foreign investment will lead to the creation of new, competitive and technologically current businesses that will provide the foundations for a lasting, modern development. None of this happened for us.”

“Tulibinafsisha kila kitu kilichokuwa mikononi mwa dola. Kila kitu kilinunuliwa na wawekezaji kutoka nje kwa sababu hatukuwa na mtaji wa ndani wenye uwezo wa kushindana. Makampuni ya nje yakafunga mashirika ya ndani kwa sababu hayakuwa na tija na yakayageuza mashirika haya kuwa wachuuzi wa bidhaa kutoka nje na kwa hivyo kuongeza watu wasio na ajira. Wataalam wa Benki ya Dunia na Shirika la Fedha la Kimataifa walitabiri kwamba hivyo ndivyo ingekuwa, lakini wakatuambia: Uwekezaji kutoka nje utazaa taasisi za kibiashara za kisasa, zenye uwezo wa kushindana, na teknologia ya kisasa, na kwa hivyo kujenga misingi ya kudumu ya maendeleo ya kisasa. Hakuna lolote kati ya hiyo lililotokea nchini mwetu”.

Mzee, unasononeka; kwa kiasi fulani, katika lugha yako ya kidiplomasia, unalalamika. Lakini hata baada ya maanguko ya mfumo wa uliberali mamboleo na utandawazi, ambao uliushabikia sana wakati wa utawala wako, hukuwa na ujasiri wa kuomba msamaha wa watu wako. Sikulaumu. Huwezi kulaumiwa. Ni hulka ya binadamu kutokuona au kukiri kosa lake. ‘Nyani haioni ngokoye.’ Katika hili huko peke yako. Katika mkutano wa kundi la nchi 20 (G20) zenye nguvu za kiuchumi ulioitishwa mjini London kuzungumzia hali mbaya ya uchumi mnamo Aprili mwaka huu, Waziri Mkuu wa Uingereza, Bwana Gordon Brown, alikiri kwamba ‘Muafaka wa Washington umekufa’, alisema hivyo bila kuwaomba radhi watu wa ulimwengu, hasa wa nchi maskini, ambao waliathirika sana na “muafaka” huo wa nchi za kibeberu ambao nchi zetu zililazimishwa kuufuata.

Mheshimiwa Rais mstaafu: Ukweli ni kwamba haya yaliyotokea sasa si matokeo yaliyokuja kwa bahati mbaya au kwa miujiza tu. Wako viongozi na hasa wasomi (angalau wachache) walisema, tena kwa uchambuzi wa kina na yakinifu, kwamba mfumo huo hautufai, hautatuletea maendeleo, bali utauongeza tu unyonywaji wa watu wetu na uporwaji wa mali zetu. Mwalimu Nyerere alijitahidi sana kupinga masharti ya nchi za kibeberu, lakini hakufanikiwa. Mzee Mwinyi alifungua milango na wewe ukakumbatia, bila kuhoji mfumo huo, hasa masharti yale ya kubinafsisha mashirika ya umma. Ni kweli mashirika mengine hayakuwa na tija, ni kweli pia mengine yalikuwa na menejimenti mbovu. Lakini je, tulijaribu kutafuta njia mbadala, licha ya hiyo ya kubinafsisha ‘kila kitu’? Wasomi wako wachache waliokosoa sera zako za kiuchumi uliwaita majina na kuwafananisha na ‘wavivu wa akili’. Ulipigia sana debe utandawazi kiasi kwamba jina lako litaingia katika historia kama mvumbuzi wa neno ‘utandawazi’ katika msamiati wa Kiswahili. Uliwafumbia macho viongozi wako wakati wakitumia vyeo vyao kujilimbikizia mali na utajiri wa kupindukia – au hili pia ilikuwa ni sera ya kujenga mabepari wa ndani?

Mbaya zaidi, mheshimiwa, chini ya uongozi wako tukakubali kutoa uhuru kwa taasisi za kifedha, na kukubali soko huria katika biashara ya fedha, (na kutokudhibiti akaunti ya mtaji (capital account)) bila udhibiti na usimamazi wowote wa dola. Hili ndilo hasa lilikuwa chanzo cha chumi zetu kuathirika kupita kiasi pale anguko la mfumo wa fedha wa kimataifa lilipotokea.

Nchi ambazo zilikataa soko huria katika mambo ya fedha, kama China na Malaysia, hazikuathirika kama nchi zingine. Naomba nisiendelee. Wananchi wetu, pamoja na kutokuwa na usomi au ustaarabu wako au wangu, wanahisi moyoni mwao udhaifu wa mfumo wa utandawazi na binamu yake uliberali mamboleo. Ndio maana wakati wa kuadhimisha miaka kumi tangu kifo cha Mwalimu, wakalilia sana Azimio la Arusha.

Mwalimu hakuwa malaika, alikuwa kiongozi wa kisiasa. Alikuwa na mapungufu yake lakini alijali watu wa chini, watu ambao walisahaulika kabisa katika awamu ya tatu na wanaendelea kupuuzwa katika awamu ya nne. Kila mlalahoi aliyetoa maoni yake alikuwa na maneno haya tu: Mwalimu alitujali; Azimio la Arusha lilitujali sisi wanyonge. Azimio lilitoa matumaini. Uliberali mamboleo na utandawazi ulitoa matumaini yapi kwa matabaka ya chini, zaidi ya kuwa njia ya viongozi kujilimbikizia mali bila aibu!

Mheshemiwa Rais mstaafu, sio nia yangu kurudia yale yaliyotokea. Lakini, utakubaliana nami kwamba historia ni muhimu. Kujifunza kutokana na historia yetu na ya wengine ni hatua ya kwanza katika safari ndefu ya kujikomboa na kujiletea maendeleo halisi. Kama kweli umejifunza na umeyaona madhara ya sera ulizozikumbatia wakati ukiwa madarakani, je, huoni kwamba una wajibu wa kumsaidia mrithi wako, na hasa kutusaidia sisi wananchi, ili tujifunze kutokana na makosa ya serikali yako? Je, kweli, bado unanadi na kutunasihi kwamba utandawazi hauepukiki? Je, bado unatushauri kwamba msukumo wa maendeleo ni uwekezaji kutoka nje, uwekezaji ambao umejidhihirisha wazi ni uporaji wa maliasili yetu? Je, huoni kwamba unao wajibu, kwa upande wako, wa kufanya kila iwezekanayo – na wewe sio mtu mdogo katika nchi hii – kutusaidia kuzindua mjadala wa kitaifa juu ya hatma ya nchi yetu na bara letu?

Wasalaam,

Issa Shivji
Profesa wa Kigoda cha Taaluma cha Mwalimu Nyerere
Chuo Kikuu cha Dar es Salaam
Okotoba 24, 2009

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

COUNTDOWN: Mwalimu: The Legacy of Julius Kambarage Nyerere - Showing Tomorrow Wed 28th Oct at 8.45 pm Venue: Edinburgh, Filmhouse

Today's Date: 27/10/2009

Mwalimu: The Legacy of Julius Kambarage Nyerere

UK Premiere Book online

By Lekoko Piniel Ole Livilal

Tanzania 2009 52m BetaSP English and Swahili with English subtitles Rating 15 Doc


Showing Wed 28th Oct at 8.45 pm
Venue: Filmhouse

In Tanzania today, Julius Kambarage Nyerere is warmly referred to as "Baba wa Taifa" – the "Father of the Nation". This documentary recognises Nyerere's leadership in the struggle that brought independence to the Tanzania mainland territory of Tanganyika in 1961; then in 1964 brought into being the union between Tanganyika and Zanzibar which established the United Republic of Tanzania. During his years as Head of State, President Nyerere's political and intellectual leadership reinforced his reputation as "Mwalimu" or "Teacher". He firmly placed Tanzania at the heart of the Southern Africa liberation struggle which culminated in the end of apartheid and the establishment of a democratic government in South Africa. During his retirement he championed the cause of the Southern countries and influenced the transformation of Tanzania from a one-party state to multi-party politics. In this one-hour documentary various individuals across different generations, including members of his immediate family, discuss how he is remembered and the ideas that define his legacy. October 2009 is the ten-year anniversary of the death of this remarkable African leader, who also had a direct connection to Edinburgh through obtaining a masters degree in history and economics at the University of Edinburgh in 1952.

We are pleased to have Tanzanian filmmaker Lekoko Piniel Ole Livilal present to discuss the film with the audience after the screening. His attendance at the festival is generously sponsored by the University of Edinburgh's Centre of African Studies; the University's International Office; and the Tanzania High Commission in London.

A high-level event commemorating the life of Julius Nyerere is to be held at the University of Edinburgh on 9th November 2009. The event marks ten years since Mwalimu's death, and sixty years since he enrolled at the University to undertake his studies.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Tujikumbushe: Alichosema Waziri wa Fedha & Uchumi kuhusu Bajeti ya Nishati 2009/2010!

"Nishati na madini imetengewa shilingi bilioni 285.5 ikilinganishwa na shilingi bilioni 378.8 zilizotengwa mwaka 2008/09, sawa na upungufu wa asilimia 24.6. Hali hii imesababishwa na kumalizika mikataba ya kuzalisha umeme kwa makampuni ya kukodi ya Dowans, APR na Aggrekko. Hatua nyingine zinachukuliwa katika mwaka 2009/10 kutafuta mikopo kutoka mashirika ya kimataifa na nchi marafiki ili kuweza kupata rasilimali zaidi za kufanikisha miradi ya nishati nchini. Nchi na mashirika ya fedha ya kimataifa yameonesha nia ya kutusaidia zikiwemo Korea ya Kusini, Saudi Fund, BADEA, na OPEC Fund." - HOTUBA YA WAZIRI WA FEDHA NA UCHUMI MHE. MUSTAFA HAIDI MKULO (MB.), AKIWASILISHA BUNGENI MAPENDEKEZO YA SERIKALI KUHUSU MAKADIRIO YA MAPATO NA MATUMIZI KWA MWAKA 2009/2010

KTY: Kwa mujibu wa hotuba hii ya Bajeti aliyotoa Waziri huyo, kati ya sekta/maeneo 6 "muhimu" ambayo "kwa pamoja yametengewa jumla ya shilingi bilioni 5,103.2 sawa na asilimia 64 ya bajeti yote ya mwaka 2009/10", ni sekta ya nishati na madini tu ambayo bajeti yake ilipungua/ilipunguzwa kutoka kwenye bajeti ya mwaka jana - za zingine 5 zilizobakia ziliongezeka kama takwimu hizi na asilimia zake za ongezeko kwenye mabano zinavyoonyesha:

Elimu: Sh Bilioni 1, 743. 9 kutoka 1,430.4 (22%)

Kilimo: Sh Bilioni 666.9 kutoka 513.0 (30%)

Miundombinu: Sh Bilioni 1,096.6 kutoka 973.3 (12.7%)

Afya: Sh Bilioni 963. 0 kutoka 910.8 (5.7%)

Maji: Sh Bilioni 347.3 kutoka 231.6 (50%)


Swali: Kuna uhusiano gani kati ya maeneo haya 5 yaliyopata ongezeko na eneo la 6 la 'nishati+' lililopata punguzo?

Jibu: Mgawo wa Elimu, Kilimo, Miundombinu, Afya na Maji!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Pambazuka News' Special Issue on Mwalimu Nyerere: How we wish you were here!

Highlights from this issue

INTRODUCTION
How we wish you were here: a tribute to Mwalimu Nyerere - Firoze Manji

PART ONE: MWALIMU NYERERE SPEAKS
Guest edited by Annar Cassam

Nyerere on Nyerere - Annar Cassam
El Mussawar interviews President Nyerere - Nawal El Saadawy
El País interviews President Nyerere - Ana Camacho
President Nyerere on liberation - Annar Cassam
Nyerere and the Commonwealth - Chief Emeka Anyaoku with Annar Cassam
Nyerere, the Organization of African Unity and liberation - Mohamed Sahnoun

PART TWO: NYERERE: CHALLENGES PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE
Guest edited by Chambi Chachage

But dear Mwalimu - Neema Ndunguru
Racial and religious tolerance in Nyerere’s political thought and practice - Salma Maoulidi
Mwalimu Nyerere’s ideas on land - Ng’wanza Kamata
Mwalimu Nyerere: The artist - Vicensia Shule
Reading history backwards with Mwalimu - Seithy Chachage
Reflecting with Nyerere on people-centered leadership - Marjorie Mbilinyi
Mwalimu Julius Nyerere: An intellectual in power - Haroub Othman
The village in Mwalimu Nyerere's thought - Issa G. Shivji
Nyerere’s vision of economic development - Faustin Kamuzora
Mwalimu in our popular imagination: The relevance of Nyerere today - Chambi Chachage
Mwalimu Nyerere and the challenge of human rights - Helen Kijo-Bisimba & Chris Maina Peter

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Pata Ujumbe, Kuna Cha Kuongeza Kwenye Mlolongo wa Picha?

Ndugu zangu

On the suibject line and at the bottom, kuna swali...

Kwa kujibu, nadhani kipo cha kuongeza. Jibu nadhani ni kuwa tupige mzigo tupunguze malalamiko na tuwe wakujituma, wabunifu, na wepesi wa kushiriki kwenye CIVIC Duties including upigaji kura. I mean we all should push, participate and have a grand voter turn out and civic participation of say 98% of eligible voters having to turn out as an example! What do you think will happen?

Let people not keep "complaining" unconstructively on one side while equally destructively keep ourselves busy listing supposedly good excuses justifying reasons for not doing something or anything constructively to help effect the desired change, at least in the thinking process. Do your part, and do it so well that you are confident and happy you are indeed doing your part so well and so confidently. That is where all the secrets lies. Nothing more, nothing else. Collectively, the desired change will eventually be achieved.

Yakibaki yale yale then we know who to blame. Its You and Only You and Nobody else. It is me and only me and nobody else. It is us! Period.

I think it is time to shift gears from complaining to taking action and consciously and deliberately be part of the whole process.


Apollo Temu
http://udadisi.blogspot.com/


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Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mwalimu Nyerere’s Pan-Africanism as Pan-Humanism

In his lifetime Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere wore many ‘hats’. Some of them were outright contradictory or dilemmatic. But such is the inherent nature of our complex humanity.

We are talking here of someone who was a president of a single party state. Yet he was the chairperson of the same party, which under the ideology of party supremacy, directed his government. Here was a statesman who, as a nationalist, was so concerned about Tanzania yet, as a Pan-Africanist, he was as equally concerned about Africa. But how could one be both?

Mwalimu Nyerere was honest enough to admit that this was indeed a real dilemma. “On the one hand,” he stated in his address on ‘The Dilemma of the Pan-Africanist’ on 13 July 1966, “is the fact that Pan-Africanism demands an African consciousness and an African loyalty.” But “on the other hand,” he noted, “is the fact that each Pan-Africanist must concern himself with the freedom and development of one of the nations of Africa.” To him that nation was Tanzania.

This dilemma also translates to the ‘individual versus society’. In a response to Bill Sutherland’s rhetoric “Ok. Let individuals develop, and let the nations be secondary,” Nyerere thus said on 13 August 1992: “It cannot be. I am telling you, Bill. If the blessed Lord had wanted a planet for myself, He would have done it. He could have made a planet for every single individual but He never did it. He put us in community, and we jolly well have to live as part of it.”

Nyerere thus elaborated this dilemmatic: “Of course, I’m an individual and a member of a community. And the community has conditions. All the commandments – Thou Shalt Not – are about community…individuals, yes – but individuals in the community. Individuals, yes –because I myself am an extremely assertive individual. Nobody can doubt my own commitment to my own individualism, but I am still an individual within the community.”

He developed this humanist outlook in 1966 in ‘A New synthesis of Man and Society’. Therein he argued that an individual’s existence in society involves an inevitable and inescapable conflict of his/her own two main desires: the desire for freedom to pursue his/her own interests and the desire for the freedoms which can only be obtained through life in society. This necessitates the individual to sacrifice, in the interest of the society, certain private freedoms which s/he could have possessed outside the society if it was at all possible to live outside the society.

Herein – in this humanist dilemma – lies Mwalimu Nyerere’s strategy for realizing the Pan-Africanism vision. To Mwalimu, Pan-Africanism was – and is – not only about Tanzanians or Africans for that matter. Rather, it a vision that encompass all humans in all their complexities.

When you have a world with a continent whose people have been tragically denied humanity through racism, colonialism and imperialism what strategy do you need to make that world whole again? Pan-Africanism. But this is not an exclusive Africanism that rejects non-Africans.

A Pan-Africanism that you need in order to re-member a dismembered world is Pan-Humanism. This is the Pan-Africanism that Mwalimu Nyerere among other African humanists espoused. Way back in February 1960 he thus stated in his speech on ‘Africa’s Place in the World’: “Pan-Africanism, at present, is a desire by the African people to work together to undo a situation which they don’t want, and to create a situation which they want, on the African continent.”

That, as Nyerere insisted afterwards, was the then present. Although he was carefully enough not to predict what forms Pan-Africanism would take in the future it is quite clear that, in his vision, it would be Pan-Humanism. Its Africa would be “a Continent of Hope for the Human Race.”

To that end he thus further stated: “The Africa that we must create, the Africa which we must bequeath to posterity, the Africa of our own dreams, cannot be an Africa which is simply free from foreign domination. It must be an Africa which the outside world will look and say: ‘Here is a continent which has truly free human beings’. The outside world should be able to say, ‘If you really want to see how free people who live up to their ideals of human society, go to Africa. That is the continent of hope for the human race.’”

What does the world see when it looks at Africa today? Does it see that universal human hope? Or does it see what Tony Blair stereotypically dubbed the ‘scar on the conscience of the world’?

If Nyerere, one of the finest sons of Africa, could be christened ‘the conscience of Africa’, why shouldn’t that qualify him to be ‘the conscience of the world’? Why isn’t his Africa the conscience of the world today? Or is it?

Let us all rekindle Africa’s vision of Pan-Africanism as Pan-Humanism. After all “Africa’s own tradition, her moral strength, her lack of ties with one power bloc or another, and that sentiments of oneness which the centuries of suffering have built among all her people, “ as Mwalimu Nyerere noted in the famous year of Africa’s Independence, “can together fit her for the role.”

That way we will honour Nyerere’s main ‘hat’. He was a human first. A Pan-Humanist indeed.

© Chambi Chachage

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

WOSIA WA BABA WA TAIFA JUU YA ARDHI YA WATANZANIA

“Katika nchi kama yetu, ambamo Waafrika ni masikini na wageni ni matajari, kuna uwezekano mkubwa kwamba Mwafrika akiruhusiwa kuiuza ardhi yake katika miaka themanini au mia moja ijayo, ardhi yote ya Tanganyika itamilikiwa na matajiri wageni na wenyeji watakuwa watwana. Lakini hata kama wageni wasingekuwa matajiri, litaibuka tabaka la Watanganyika matajiri na wajanja. Tukiruhusu ardhi iuzwe kama kanzu, katika muda mchache kutakuwa na kundi dogo la Waafrika wakiwa na ardhi na walio wengi watakuwa watwana” JKN 1958 (Uhuru na Umoja)

Haya ni maneno ya Baba wa Taifa hayati Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere aliyoyatoa mnamo mwaka wa 1958 wakati wa vuguvugu la kupigania uhuru katika makala yake iitwayo Mali ya Taifa. Kimsingi muktadha hasa uliopelekea kuandikwa kwa makala hiyo ilikuwa ni jaribio la Waingereza kuingiza nchini mfumo wa umiliki ardhi usiokuwa na ukomo (freehold). Ikumbukwe kwamba suala hili lilipendekezwa na Tume ya Malkia ya 1953-1955 iliyofanya zoezi hili katika nchi zote tatu zilizokuwa chini ya utawala wa Mwingereza (Kenya,Tanganyika na Uganda). Kwa mtazamo wa tume hiyo ,mfumo huo ulionekana ni bora zaidi ikilinganishwa na mfumo wa umilki ardhi wa pamoja chini ya misingi ya mila na desturi za makabila mbalimbali. Kimsingi pendekezo hilo lililenga zaidi kuingiza mfumo wa soko huria katika kuratibu suala zima la mfumo wa milki ya ardhi.

Kwa mtazamo wa Mwalimu, kuruhusu mfumo wa aina hiyo sio tu kungeleta matabaka ya wenye ardhi na watwana lakini pia kwa mazingira ya nchi yetu ingekuwa chanzo cha machafuko ya kijamii. Pendekezo hilo lilikubalika kwa majirani zetu Kenya na ikawa ndiyo chanzo kikubwa kwa walalahai na walalaheri wa huko kujilimbikizia maeneo makubwa ya ardhi mpaka kufikia hatua baadhi yao kumiliki eneo lenye ukubwa kama nchi ya Rwanda! Hapa nchini baada ya kupata upinzani kutoka kwa viongozi wa kisiasa wa wakati huo wakiongozwa na Mwalimu Nyerere wazo lilizikwa rasmi miaka ya mwanzoni ya uhuru. Mwalimu kimsingi aliichukulia ardhi kama zawadi kutoka kwa Mungu kwa ajili ya watu wote na si kundi la wachache.

Baada ya kupata uhuru, kimsingi sheria ya Kikoloni ilifanyiwa marekebisho madogo ila msingi wa sheria ulibakia pale pale. Kutokana na mapungufu katika sheria hiyo wazalishaji wadogo, wakulima kwa wafugaji na makundi mengineyo, yaliathirika sana hasa lilipokuja suala la uhakika wa miliki. Pamoja na kwamba serikali ya awamu ya kwanza chini ya Mwalimu ilikuwa na nia na lengo zuri la kuwakwamua Watanzania kutoka katika lindi la umaskini katika utekelezaji kupitia Sheria ya Ardhi ya Kikoloni ya Mwaka 1923 walio wengi walijikuta wakipoteza haki zao.

Uanzishwaji wa mashamba ya lililokuwa Shirika la Kilimo na Chakula (NAFCO), Ranchi za Taifa (NARCO) na upanukaji wa maeneo ya hifadhi ni mifano michache tu inayoonyesha jinsi ambayo haki za watu juu ya ardhi zilivyopokwa. Kimsingi ardhi ilipokwa kutoka mikononi mwa wananchi ama kwa maana nyingine umma na kuwekwa mikononi mwa dola sio katika wakati wa Mwalimu tu bali toka enzi za ukoloni! Kwa hiyo utaifishaji na mengineyo yaliyofuatia yalikuwa ni sehemu tu ya kile tulichokirithi toka kwa wakoloni.

Lengo la makala hii siyo kuangalia yaliyotokea hasa wakati huo wa Mwalimu, lakini hasa ni kujikita katika msingi wa mtazamo wake katika kipindi cha kupigania uhuru. Je aliyoyasema Mwalimu mnamo mwaka 1958 katika kipindi chetu yamepoteza maana ama yanasadifu yanayotokea sasa? Baada ya kukaa na sheria hiyo ya kikoloni kwa takribani miongo saba (1923-1999) serikali kwa kufuata mapendekezo ya Tume ya Rais ya Uchunguzi wa Migogoro ya Ardhi ya Mwaka 1991 iliamua kutunga sheria mpya za Ardhi mnamo mwaka 1999.

Sheria ya Ardhi Namba 4 na Sheria ya Ardhi ya Vijiji Namba 5 za mwaka 1999, pamoja na mazuri yaliyokuwamo katika sheria hizi bado msingi wake mkuu unabaki kuwa sheria ya kikoloni kwa maana ya kulimbikiza nguvu nyingi mikononi mwa dola. Ardhi inatajwa kuwa mali ya Umma lakini kivitendo ni mali ya serikali zaidi kuliko kuwa ya umma! Sheria hizi zilifanyiwa marekebisho mnamo mwaka wa 2004 ambayo kinyume kabisa na Mwalimu marekebisho hayo yanatambua ardhi tupu ambayo haijaendelezwa kuwa ina thamani na pia yanaruhusu ardhi kuuzwa kama bidhaa nyingineyo yoyote katika soko!

Katika makala yake ya 1958, Mwalimu ameendelea kutanabahisha wazi kuwa “wakati watu wengi watakapokubali njia ambayo itawawezesha wachache kumiliki ardhi ambayo kwa kweli ni zawadi ya Mungu kwa watu wote, watakuwa wanaukubali utumwa kwa hiari yao wenyewe.” Ni nini taathira ya mabadiliko ya sheria ya ardhi ya mwaka 2004? Je, tunaweza kusema utabiri wa Mwalimu katika hili umetimia? Je kumeibuka kundi la Watanzania matajiri wajanja wachache ambao kazi yao ni kuwanunua waungwana tuliosalia tusio na hili wala lile tukisogezwa pembezoni zaidi?

Wakati wa uongozi wa awamu ya tatu Mkuu wa kaya wa wakati huo alishangaa kuona wanakaya wakiwa hawafaidi matunda ya mageuzi ya soko huria hivyo aliamua kwenda Peru na kutafuta mwarobaini wa tatizo hilo la Watanzania kutofaidi matunda, matokeo yake ndiyo marudio ya yale ambayo Tume ya Malkia ilipendekeza lakini kwa mtazamo wa kuwa kila kipande amilikishwe mtu binafsi kwa kuwa masuala ya umiliki wa pamoja ni mambo ya Ujamaa uliokwishapitwa na wakati! Pamoja na hayo hii ndiyo njia rahisi ya kupata ardhi kwa Watanzania wajanja wachache ama wageni matajiri kwani badala ya kuongea na ukoo sasa wataongea na mtu binafsi!

Ukitembelea vijiji vya pembezoni mwa miji yetu utagundua kuwa wamilki wa awali sasa wamebakia kuwa watwana katika ardhi zao kwa kuwa walishauza ili kukidhi haja na shida zao mbalimbali. Kwa kuwa Watanzania walio wengi tegemeo lao kubwa ni ardhi machafuko ya kijamii ambayo Mwalimu aliyahofia enzi zake kuwa kama tusipokuwa makini yanaweza kutokea leo hii yamekuwa ni nyimbo za kawaida katika vyombo vya habari! Mashamba makubwa yaliyochukuliwa na serikali kwa lengo zuri la kuifaidisha jamii nzima leo hii yamebinafsishwa na mara nyingine mashamba yamebinafishwa hata pale ambapo wanavijiji waishio jirani nayo wanayahitaji wa ardhi.

Migogoro ya Arumeru, Kilimanjaro, Tanga, Morogoro ni mifano tu ya jinsi ambavyo jamii imechoshwa na mgawanyo wa rasilimali unaofaidisha kundi dogo la wateule huku wana wa nchi wakitaabika kutafuta wapi pa kukamata! Wimbi la ujio wa wageni wanaotamani ardhi yetu nalo bila shaka katika miaka michache ijayo itaongezea petroli katika moto ambao kama hatutakuwa makini katika kipindi hiki utalipuka.

Tuliokuwepo sasa tumesahau kuwa kama alivyotuasa Mwalimu ardhi ni mali yetu lakini hasa ni mali ya vizazi vijavyo na hivyo basi tumekabidhiwa kama dhamani kwa ajili ya kutuwezesha sisi lakini hasa kukiandalia mazingira mazuri kizazi kitakachofuata. Bila shaka huu ulikuwa ni msingi wa kuweka msisitizo katika jamii za Kitanzania kuwa msitari wa mbele hasa kuanzia ngazi ya familia na Kijiji katika kujumuika kwa pamoja kujiletea maendeleo.

Leo hii tunamikakati mbalimbali na hivi karibuni ulizinduliwa Mkakati wa Kilimo Kwanza, je Kilimo Kwanza ni kwa ajili ya kundi gani? Kilimo Kwanza kinamlenga nani? Je, kimetambua nafasi ya hili kundi la wazalishaji wadogo hasa akina Mama ambao kimsingi ndio wanaolilisha taifa?

Hapa ikumbukwe kuwa Mwalimu alishapata kusema juu ya jinsi akina baba wa Kitanzania wanavyotumia muda wao! Nusu ya maisha yao wapo likizo huku kazi za shamba zikifanywa na akina Mama. Je, nafasi ya akina Mama imetambuliwa na Kilimo Kwanza? Ama ndiyo mikakati ya kuwezesha Watanzania matajiri wajanja wachache kunyakua maeneo makubwa ya ardhi kwa kisingizio cha Kilimo Kwanza?

Katika Azimio la Kilimo Kwanza kuna pendekezo la kufanyia marekebisho Sheria ya Ardhi ya Vijiji ili kuwezesha upatikanaji wa ardhi uwe rahisi! Urahisi huu unalenga katika nini? Vijiji kama vijiji imeshindikana kuviwezesha ili viwe msingi wa Kilimo Kwanza kwa kutumia ardhi zao, au Kilimo Kwanza kinanoga mpaka Lifanyabiashara Bepari moja likitoka Dar es Salaam na kwenda kunyakua ardhi ya wana wa Rufiji?

Nimalizie makala yangu ya kumbukizi ya Baba wa Taifa kwa kusema kuwa masahibu wanayopitia majirani zetu sio majanga ya asili ila ni kazi ya akili za binadamu. Tukiachia hulka za kibinafsi zitawale maamuzi na mienendo yetu ya kimaisha hii amani tujivuniayo sasa itayeyuka kama inavyoyeyuka sasa barafu katika Mlima wa Kilimanjaro. Tukumbuke kuwa panapofuka moshi moto hufuatia.

Tukiruhusu ardhi iuzwe kama kanzu, katika muda mchache kutakuwa na kundi dogo la Waafrika wakiwa na ardhi na walio wengi watakuwa watwana na vizazi vya watwana havitakubali hili hivyo tutakuwa tumekiandalia kizazi kitakachofuata zawadi ya vita na machafuko kwa tamaa ya kujilimbikizia kila kipande cha ardhi.

© Bernard Baha

Monday, October 12, 2009

If You Want To Invest At Least Your 30 minutes To Reframe the "African question" And Avoid the Single Story ... Here's Hope! Plus plenty more...

[1] Beautifully presented and in perspective!

http://www.ted.com/talks/chimamanda_adichie_the_danger_of_a_single_story.html

"About this talk

Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories. Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice -- and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.

About Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Inspired by Nigerian history and tragedies all but forgotten by recent generations of westerners, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's novels and stories are jewels in the crown of diasporan literature. " Full bio and more links

-------------------------------------------------------

[2] and don't miss Andrew Mwenda's Talk

http://www.ted.com/talks/andrew_mwenda_takes_a_new_look_at_africa.html

"About this talk (In Arusha Tanzania)


In this provocative talk, journalist Andrew Mwenda asks us to reframe the "African question" -- to look beyond the media's stories of poverty, civil war and helplessness and see the opportunities for creating wealth and happiness throughout the continent.

About Andrew Mwenda

Journalist Andrew Mwenda has spent his career fighting for free speech and economic empowerment throughout Africa. He argues that aid makes objects of the poor -- they become passive…" Full bio and more links

Thursday, September 17, 2009

UNAPOKUWA MWANAMKE MCHONGAJI

UNAPOKUWA MCHONGAJI MWANAMKE

Imeandikwa na Mwandale Mwanyekwa na Bob Sankofa

Mara nyingi kila ninapokaa na marafiki ama hata wapita njia huwa hawaachi kuniuliza maswali mengi kuhusiana na kazi ninayofanya, uchongaji. Lakini wengine huwa wanakwenda mbali zaidi na kuniuliza najihisi vipi kuwa mwanamke mchongaji katika fani ambayo kwa kitambo sasa imekuwa ikitambulika zaidi kama fani ya wanaume. Mara nyingi huwa natamani kuwapa jibu la jumla, kwamba, “Kama wanawake tunaweza kuwazaa wanaume basi hakuna anachofanya mwanaume mwanamke akishindwe”.

Jibu la namna hii linaweza kuwa tata kwa rafiki zangu wengine, maana wapo marafiki wa kiume wasioamini kwamba kazi yeyote inayoweza kufanywa na mwanaume basi hata mwanamke anaweza, halafu mbaya zaidi wapo marafiki wa kike ambao wamelambishwa sumu ya kuamini kwamba yapo mambo ni kwa ajili ya wanaume pekee.

Sasa mara nyingi huwa nakumbana na changamoto hii, na mara karibu zote ili kuthibitisha imani yangu kwa watu wengine, imani ya kwamba anachoweza mwanaume na mwanamke anaweza, huwa inanilazimu kuzungumzia hisia juu ya kazi yangu kwa kumualika muuliza swali kuitalii historia yangu.

Kila ninapozungumzia historia ya kazi yangu, mimi binafsi hujihisi kama ndio ninaipitia mara ya kwanza. Kila wakati najifunza jambo jipya ninapotazama historia yangu. Hadithi yangu ni moja ya hadithi nyingi, tena zinazoshabihiana, za binti anayezaliwa katika nchi ya Tanzania, na pengine katika bara la Afrika. Ni hadithi ambayo mara nyingi huanza na Baraka nyingi lakini zisizokosa vikwazo njiani.

Baraka ya kwanza ni kwamba mama aliyenibeba tumboni kwa miezi tisa ni Mmakonde, kwa takwimu za haraka ni wazi kwamba kabila la Wamakonde, wenyeji wa kusini mwa Tanzania, ndio wachongaji wanaofahamika zaidi ndani ya nchi hii. Kwa hivyo, naweza kusema sikuchagua kuwa mchongaji, bali uchongaji ulinichagua. Nimekulia kijijini kabisa na katika utoto wangu nilizungukwa na familia nyingi za wachongaji, japo wengi kama si wote, walikuwa ni wanaume.

Baraka ya pili ni kwamba babu yangu mzaa mama yangu alikuwa ni fundi seremala na pia mchongaji wa vinyago, kwa hivyo nilianza kucheza na vifaa vya uchongaji nikingali binti mdogo kabisa, na kwa bahati nzuri babu yangu alifurahi nilipokwenda kucheza katika karakana yake.

Napenda kusema hapa kwamba kama babu yangu angekuwa akifanya kazi nyingine labda nisingekuwa mchongaji leo. Lakini si hivyo tu, iwapo nafsi ya babu yangu ingekuwa imetawaliwa na mfumo dume, pengine leo nisingekuwa mchongaji mwanamke, fursa niliyopewa na babu yangu ni mchango mkubwa uliosababisha niwe mwanamke ninayepambana katika fani inayosemekana kuwa ni ya wanaume.

Ni vigumu kujibu swali lililoulizwa bila ya kumuhusisha bibi yangu mzaa mama katika kufanikiwa kwangu kuwa mchongaji mwanamke, ama mwanamke mchongaji. Bibi yangu alikuwa mfinyanzi mzuri wa mitungi na vyungu. Kabla ya kufikia umri wa kwenda shule za serikali, tayari nilikuwa nimeshakwenda shule ya nyumbani. Kwa maana hiyo basi iwapo usingenikuta kwenye karakana ndogo ya babu yangu, ungenikuta pembeni ya bibi yangu nikitengeneza wanasesere wa udongo.

Nadhani ujuzi wangu wa kuchonga vinyago ulianzia hapa zaidi, na pengine nisingekuwa mchongaji basi lazima ningekuwa mfinyanzi. Ni kazi mbili nilizozipenda kuliko chochote kingine, ni kazi nilizoamini wazi kabisa kwamba ningependa kuzifanya katika maisha yangu hapa duniani.

Kazi ya uchongaji niliichagua mapema kwa sababu katika kijiji changu wakati watoto wote wa kike wa umri wangu tulipokuwa katika umri wa kutengeneza wanasesere ulipopita, wenzangu waliachana na mchezo huo lakini mimi niliendelea na sikuwahi kuacha. Baadae nikaanza kuchonga vijisanamu vidogo kwa kutumia miti ya mihogo na wakati mwingine hata mihogo mibichi, sikuwa nikichonga kwa ustadi sana lakini nilijuwa wazi kuwa ninaweza kuchonga hata kwenye mti mgumu kama nikiweka bidii.
Mapenzi yangu kwa sanaa hii yalinifanya kuoneka
na mwenye upungufu, tofauti na watoto wengine. Wengi waliona kama nimekataa kukua. Nilipoanza shule ya msingi sikuwa mwanafunzi mzuri sana darasani, sikuelewa kwa haraka kwa nini watu wanafundishwa vitu wasivyo na mapenzi navyo. Nina uhakika kama shuleni wangefundisha somo la kuchonga labda na mimi ningekuwa mmoja wa wanafunzi mahiri katika masomo. Ingekuwa rahisi kwangu kuelewa somo langu kwa sababu nilikuwa nalipenda.

Elimu yetu ya darasani, inatupima kwa maandishi, labda ingekuwa inatupima kwa matendo pia na mimi ningefanikiwa kwenda shule ya sekondari kama wenzangu, lakini kwa sababu akili yangu ilikuwa kwenye vinyago wakati wote, safari yangu ya darasani ikaishia hapo. Sikuwa na sifa za kwenda shule ya sekondari kwa sababu mtihani wangu wa nadharia pekee haukunipa nafasi.

Mara nyingi watu huniuliza iwapo ninasikitika kwa kutopata nafasi ya kwenda elimu ya juu. Huwa nasikitika kwa sababu ukweli ni kwamba sikukataa kwenda elimu ya juu lakini sikuweza kufikia vigezo vya watahini kwa wakati huo. Kwa upande wa pili sijutii kwa sababu labda ningeenda elimu ya juu na mimi ningekuwa kama wenzangu wengi wanaopenda kuvaa suti na kukaa kwenye kiti cha kuzunguka ofisini lakini wasifurahie kazi wanayofanya. Ofisi yangu ni chini ya mwembe, vazi la kazi yangu ni ovaroli, lakini ninayo furaha moyoni ya kufanya kile ninachokipenda. Nina imani hata siku Mungu atakapoamua kufanya hesabu ya namna nilivyotumia muda wangu kujiletea furaha moyoni, hatosikitika, ataona wazi kuwa nilifanya kile alichoniagiza kuja kukifanya hapa duniani.

Sikuamka siku moja na kujikuta nimekuwa mchongaji mwanamke, niliingia dunia hii nikitambua kuwa nataka kuwa mchongaji mwanamke. Tangu nilipofahamu nilichohitaji kwenye maisha yangu nimeweka akili, roho, mwili, muda, na moyo wangu kwenye tamanio langu. Si kwamba akili yangu inawaza uchongaji muda wote, la hasha, huwa nawaza kujipamba pia kama wanawake wengine wote, lakini ukweli ni kwamba hata ninapojipamba nusu ya mawazo yangu yapo kwenye kazi yangu.

Ni kwa kuwa na imani kama hii ndiko kulikorahisisha kazi yangu na kuyaweka mazingira ya kazi yangu katika hali ya mteremko. Umakini wangu kazini ndio ulionijengea heshima katikati ya wanaume, wananiheshimu na kunipenda, wananisaidia sana pia. Walimu wa kazi yangu ni wanaume na wanawake, kila mmoja kwa nafasi yake. Soko la kazi yangu ni la wanaume na wanawake, kila mmoja kwa nafasi na maono yake.

Hali hii inanifanya kila wakati nijiulize, “Kwa nini nisiwe mwanamke mchongaji au mchongaji mwanamke wakati uwanja uko wazi kwa ajili yangu?” Swali hili hunifanya kukamata gogo na patasi na kutengeneza kinyago. Huwezi kuitwa mchongaji mwanamke au mwanamke mchongaji bila kuchonga.

Kwa hivyo basi, mimi ni mwanamke mchongaji kwa sababu ninachonga na kuhusu ninajisikia vipi kuwa katika fani ya wanaume ukweli ni kwamba “Mara zote mtazamo wangu ni kwamba kazi yangu ni zaidi ya jinsia, kazi yangu ni sehemu ya uumbaji na katika uumbaji Mungu amemshirikisha kwa karibu zaidi mwanamke kwa kubeba mimba kwa miezi tisa. Lakini Mungu alifahamu pia kwamba uumbaji hautakamilika asipokuwepo mwanaume, na vivyo hivyo kinyume chake. Kwa hivyo najisikia vyema kukamilisha uumbaji kwa kujumuika katika FANI YA WACHONGAJI”

Afrika imekwishaamka, na mwanamke kama alivyo mwanaume amekwishaamka. Yanayotuunganisha ni makubwa kuliko yanayotutenganisha. Siku mwanamke na mwanaume watakapoamua kushikana mikono, na tayari kazi hii imekwishaanza, basi itakuwa neema kwa dunia hii maana hatutakuwa na wakati wa kupoteza tukimjadili ‘mchongaji mwanamke’ bali kama ilivyo kwa wanaume, mwanamke atatambulika kama “Mchongaji”.

Mwanamke asimame sasa na mwanaume asimame pamoja nae ili miaka michache tangu sasa mtu asihukumiwe kwa jinsia yake bali kwa ubora wa kazi au fani yake.

Najisikia huru kuwa mchongaji. UHURU SASA, UHURU MILELE!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Have you ever wished you were not Tanzanian?

You could see it in their eyes. That strong urge to prove something wrong. To show that ‘yes, we can’ be successful Tanzanians out there. And that surely Tanzania as a success story is possible.

As I listened attentively to them my mind drifted away. It went as far as Euro-America. I wondered how many times Africans or Tanzanians have to prove themselves to the world.

They were three of them. Each came to tell her story in our workshop on ‘Women as Producers of Knowledge’ at the recently ended Gender Festival. A ‘herstory’ that will re-centre women.

The first one, Mwandale Mwanyekwa, spoke of how it is possible to be a successful woman sculptor in a domain dominated by men. Then Modesta Mahiga showed how it is possible for a young woman to manage her own successful company. Finally Belinda Mlingo opened up the possibilities of successfully competing globally in the not so free market of fashion and design.

As a man I could only indirectly relate to how proud they feel to be women and Tanzanian women for that matter. But, as a ‘Tanzanian African’, I could directly relate to how they feel to be Tanzanian. What I sensed is that common persistence feeling of a bruised African pride.

This is the feeling that haunted Frantz Fanon when he lamented why we should only derive our basic purpose from the African past. It is what troubled Mwalimu Julius Nyerere when he warned us about being “permanent source of the hewers of wood and drawers of water for the educated of this world” if we don’t enter “the honourable competition for knowledge.”

Since that tragic encounter between Africa and the West which keep replaying itself in many ways, ‘the African’ has never ceased to attempt to prove himself/herself. As this encounter is rehearsed time and again, he/she is asked over and over again to question his/her pride as an African. ‘What do you have to show to the world?’ ‘What have you contributed to civilization?’

In the case of post-Ujamaa Tanzania , I think, our wounded African pride is sorely festering. Why? Because of what the late Professor Chachage referred to as our ‘collective imbecilization.’

Note, for instance, the following anecdote from Modesta Mahiga: “It saddens me therefore that when a foreigner speaks to a confident and well presented Tanzanian they immediately ask where that person is from because they couldn’t possible be Tanzanian.”

“Unfortunately”, she concludes, “we are not associated with excellence. I will never forget that during training overseas a former CEO I served under said ‘putting the words ‘Tanzanian’ and ‘Excellence’ together would be an oxymoron.’ Even when convinced that you are indeed a Tanzanian they attribute your confidence and drive to foreign exposure. I find this insulting.”

If you can’t identify with that anecdote then try recalling something similar to what Belinda Mlingo’s hears during her numerous attempts to explain to the Euro-American mindset where the heck Tanzania is: ‘Ooh Kilimanjaro’; ‘Aah Zanzibar’; ‘Yeah Nyerere; ‘Wow Serengeti’!

It is these encounters coupled with ‘our collective imbecilization’ in the areas of grand corruption (ufisadi), contradictory policies (sera ndumilakuwili) and what a runaway Tanzanian refers to as the ‘celebration of mediocrity’ that sometimes make us wish we are not Tanzanians.

As the Kiswahili saying goes ‘lisemwalo lipo kama halipo linakuja’, that is, ‘what is said is there and if not then it is coming.’ Due to certain historical circumstances, there is a lot that is said about us that is ‘really’ there. But, even if it is not there, it is coming because of our own making.

Surely we don’t have to make history work against us. After all we have claimed these as the times of the ‘African Renaissance’. We have proclaimed that today it feels good to be African.

It is about time now that we make our own history and herstory. As Mwandale Mwanyekwa alerts us, ‘ Africa has already awakened!’ Why, then, should Tanzania (ns) remain in slumber?

© Chambi Chachage - The Citizen (15/09/09)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Toward Unsilencing 'Silences in African History'

“Of all the crimes of colonialism there is none worse than the attempt to make us believe we had no indigenous culture of our own; or that what we did have was worthless – something of which we should be ashamed, instead of a source of pride”

"History will one day have its say. It will not be the history taught in the United Nations, Washington, Paris, or Brussels, however, but the history taught in the countries that have rid themselves of colonialism and its puppets. Africa will write its own history, and both north and south of the Sahara it will be a history full of glory and dignity"

Friday, September 4, 2009

WARSHA YA WASIFU WA WANAWAKE KAMA WAZALISHAJI, WATUNZAJI NA WATOAJI WA MAARIFA NA WAENDELEZAJI WA UTAMADUNI


WARSHA YA 4 YA TAMASHA LA 9 LA JINSIA

ALHAMISI 10 SEPTEMBA 2009

SAA 5 ASUBUHI – SAA 11 ALASIRI

VIWANJA VYA MTANDAO WA JINSIA TANZANIA (TGNP)

MABIBO, DAR –ES- SALAAM

Wasifu wa Wanawake kama Wazalishaji, Watunzaji na Watoaji wa Maarifa na Waendelezaji wa Utamaduni na Historia Mbadala ya Jamii

Utangulizi
Warsha hii inaangalia umuhimu wa mwanamke katika kuvumbua, kuhifadhi na kusambaza maarifa, ufahamu au ujuzi wa masuala mbalimbali katika jamii. Katika jamii mbalimbali mwanamke amekuwa kiungo na msingi mkuu katika kuzalisha, kutunza na kukuza utamaduni na historia ya jamii husika. Lakini kutokana na mfumo dume kuota mizizi katika jamii hizi, nafasi hiyo ya mwanamke ama imekuwa haitambuliwi ipasavyo na kusahauliwa sana au kwa makusudi kabisa imewekwa pembezoni kana kwamba wanaume pekee ndio wanajishughulisha na uzalishaji na umiliki wa rasilimali ya maarifa.

Kwa kuzingatia mada kuu ya Tamasha la Tisa la Jinsia -2009 lenye Kaulimbiu ya ‘Rasilimali Ziwanufaishe Wanawake Walio Pembezoni’, washiriki wa Warsha ya Nne watamtambua na kumbainisha na kumrudisha mwanamke aliyeko pembezoni katika nafasi yake muhimu kama mmoja wa wazalishaji, watunzaji na watoaji wa maarifa yanayohusiana na matumizi na hifadhi ya rasilimali hizi ambazo zinapaswa kumnufaisha kama zinavyowanufaisha watu wengine ambao hawako pembezoni.

Maarifa na Utamaduni kama Nyenzo za Vuguvugu la Ukombozi wa Wanawake
Tunapozungumzia maarifa na utamaduni ambao mwanamke ni mshiriki mkuu wa uzalishaji, utoaji na usambazaji wake tunamaanisha nini hasa? Tunamaanisha kuwa maarifa ni yale mambo yote ambayo jamii au watu fulani katika jamii wanayajua na kuyatumia kama mbinu au nyenzo ya kutumia rasilimali zao ili kujikimu na kujiletea maendeleo yao. Hali kadhalika tunamaanisha kuwa kwa ujumla wake maarifa hayo yote ndio utamaduni wenyewe wa jamii hiyo na wanajamii wake.

Kwa mfano, rasilimali kuu ya ardhi imekuwa ikitunzwa na kutumiwa kwa namna tofauti katika jamii mbalimbali. Maarifa kuhusu matumizi hayo ya ardhi ni kama vile kupumzisha ardhi katika kipindi fulani ili ipate rutuba kwa ajili ya msimu mwingine wa kilimo katika jamii za wakulima au malisho katika jamii za wafugaji. Kwenye jamii husika maarifa haya yamekuwa yakirithishwa kutoka kwenye kizazi kimoja hadi kingine na hivyo kuendelea karne hadi karne na kuwa sehemu ya utamaduni wa jamii hiyo. Jamii za wafugaji wa Kimaasai na Kibarabaig, kwa mfano, zimekuwa na utamaduni wa ufugaji wa kuhamahama ambapo wakati wa msimu wa kiangazi zinaliaacha kwa muda eneo fulani lenye rutuba lipate muda wa kuchipusha majani zaidi na kurutubisha vyanzo vya maji. Katika kipindi hicho jamii hiyo itakwenda kwenye maeneo mengine na baada ya msimu huo kuisha itarudi tena kwenye eneo la awali ambalo sasa litakuwa na uwezo wa ziada wa kustahimili wingi wa mifugo yao bila kuchoka na kupoteza rutuba yake hadi msimu ujao wa kuhama utakapoanza. Mwanamke katika jamii hizi amekuwa ni mshiriki muhimu katika kukuza na kuhifadhi maarifa haya hasa ukizingatia kuwa katika jamii za Kimaasai amekuwa mstari wa mbele katika maarifa ya ujenzi wa maboma ya kudumu na yale ya muda kwa ajili ya uhamaji.

Warsha hii inampa changamoto kila mshiriki kujiangalia kwa undani yeye mwenyewe na jamii inayomzunguka kuona ni ujuzi na maarifa gani ambayo yeye au wanawake walio pembezoni wanayavumbua, wanayakuza na wanayasambaza kama sehemu ya utamaduni wao. Je, yule mwanamke anayechota maji kwenye kisima kile cha maji kilicho mbali na pale anapoishi ana maarifa gani kuhusu namna ya kupata rasilimali hiyo ambayo imekuwa adimu bila sababu ya msingi na, je, maarifa hayo yanamsaidiaje yeye na wenzake katika kupata, kuhifadhi na kutumia maji hayo katika namna endelevu? Harakati za mwanamke huyu na wenzake kupata maji zinafanikiwa kwa kiasi gani na,je, mafanikio hayo yanasambazwa kwa wanajamii wengine ambao nao wana changamoto ya upatikanaji wa maji?

Je, maarifa ya Bibi yule katika Kijiji kile aliyekuwa anatumia chungu cha asili kuyafanya maji yawe ya baridi pamoja na kuwa safi na salama , yamehifadhiwa na kurithishwa kwa kizazi kinachofuata au yamesahauliwa kwa kuwa baadhi ya watu katika jamii wana majokofu? Na ule ujuzi wa Dada yule kwenye Mtaa ule katika kutambua ni wapi panafaa kuchimba kisima chenye maji ambayo siyo ya chumvi au magadi umehifadhiwa na kusambazwa kwa wengine ambao wanahitaji maji ya aina hiyo kwa muda wakati wanaendelea na harakati za kuhakikisha maji ya bomba yanapatikana kwa kila kaya nchini?

Mifano hiyo ya maarifa kuhusu ardhi na maji ambazo zinahesabika kama rasilimali muhimu sana ni sehemu ndogo tu ya maarifa ambayo wanawake, wakiwamo wale walio pembezoni, wameyazalisha na wanaendelea kuyazalisha. Changamoto kubwa inayotokana na mfumo dume ni, je, maarifa haya yanahifadhiwa na kurithishwa kwa vizazi vijavyo kama sehemu ya utamaduni wa jamii husika na kama mchango muhimu wa wanawake katika kuiendeleza jamii hiyo. Kama utamaduni ni jumla yote ya masuala ya jamii kama wasomi wetu wanavyotukumbusha, je, mwanamke aliyeko pembezoni anatambuliwa kama mshiriki muhimu katika jumla yote ya masuala hayo ya jamii yetu/zetu?

Warsha hii pia inaangalia upande wa pili wa shilingi ambao mwanamke anashiriki katika kuzalisha na kuhifadhi maarifa yanayoishia kuwa nyenzo za kumkandamiza na kuikandamiza jamii yake pamoja na kujenga utamaduni wa kukubali ukandamizwaji. Lakini warsha hii haiishii hapo tu bali inaangalia ni jinsi gani maarifa hayo hayo yanatumiwa au yanaweza kutumiwa na wanawake kama nyenzo ya harakati za kupinga utamaduni/maarifa kandamizi na kujikomboa dhidi ya mawazo na mifumo ya mahusiano inayoelekezwa na taasisi na itikadi ya mfumo dume na mifumo kandamizi mingine kama vile ile ya ubaguzi wa rangi na ubepari wa kibeberu.

Kuwatambua na Kuwabainisha Wanawake kama Wadau Muhimu wa Maarifa
Ili kutimiza lengo lake kuu la kumrudisha mwanamke aliyeko pembezoni mwa jamii kwenye nafasi yake halisi, yaani awe ‘katikati ya jamii’, warsha hii itatumia mbinu ya ‘Vunja Ukimya – Sema Usikike!’ Hii mbinu itahusisha kuwapa nafasi washiriki kuelezea wasifu wao na kutoa visa mkasa au shuhuda ya kile wanachokifahamu, namna walivyokifahamu na jinsi ambavyo wanawafahamisha wengine. Warsha hii itakuwa uwanja wa kupashana habari na kubadilishana uzoefu kuhusu maarifa mbalimbali ambayo ni zao la wanawake hasa wale walio pembezoni. Maarifa haya yatakusanywa na kusambazwa kwa jamii na kuhifadhiwa kwa ajili ya vizazi vijavyo kama sehemu muhimu ya jamii hii. Hivyo, warsha hii itakuwa na matukio haya:

1.Maelezo kutoka kwa Washiriki kuhusu Maarifa yatokanayo na Mchango wa Wanawake
2. Maonyesho ya Magazeti na Vitabu vyenye Wasifu wa Wanawake Mbalimbali Tanzania
3. Mada kuhusu Kumbukumbu kutoka kwa Mwangalizi wa Nyaraka na Maktaba (Mkutubi)
4. Mahojiano ya Wazi na Wanawake Walioandika au Walioandikiwa Wasifu katika Magazeti
5. Mafunzo kuhusu kujiandikia kwa urahisi Kitabu cha Kumbukumbu za kila Siku (Shajara)
6. Majadiliano kuhusu ‘Maarifa Simulizi’ na Changamoto ya kutojua Kusoma na Kuandika
7. Mkanda wa Video kuhusu Harakati za Wanawake kupata na kutoa Taarifa na Maarifa
8. Maswali na Majibu kati ya Washiriki na Wataalamu wa Maarifa Asilia na Tiba za Jadi


Washiriki wafuatao na wengineo wanatazamiwa kujumuika na Wanatamasha katika warsha hii:

(i) Wahariri wa Kijarida cha Woman (Mwanamke) wa Gazeti la Daily News
(ii) Wahariri wa Kijarida cha Woman (Mwanamke) wa Gazeti la The Citizen
(iii) Waandishi wa Wasifu na Maarifa ya Wanawake katika gazeti la Mwananchi
(iv) Waandishi wa Gazeti la Si Mchezo! la Femina HIP na waliotoa Stori Yangu
(v) Wanawake 2 waliohojiwa na kuandikiwa wasifu kwenye Gazeti la Lucky!
(vi) Wachapishaji wa Andika Afrika na Wadau wa Gazeti la Startup Biashara
(vii) Wakutubi 2 kutoka Maktaba Kuu na ya Chuo Kikuu cha Dar-es-Salaam
(viii) Wakunga wa Jadi na Waganga Rasmi wa Tiba Asilia na Mitishamba

Hitimisho
Baada ya kupata Uhuru na kuwa Jamhuri Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere alitukumbusha kuwa katika makosa yote ya ukoloni hakuna lililo baya kupita jaribio lao la kutufanya Watanzania tuamini kuwa hatukuwa na utamaduni wetu au kile tulichokuwa nacho hakikuwa na thamani yoyote. Warsha hii ni sehemu ya jitihada za kutambua kuwa kile tulicho nacho – yaani maarifa yetu na utamaduni wetu – kina thamani na umuhimu na kuwa wale wote wanaozalisha maarifa hayo wanapaswa kutambuliwa. Na kama alivyosema mwanamaarifa mmoja, kuna nafasi kwa kila mtu kwenye uwanja wa ushindi dhidi ya ukandamizaji. Ndio, kuna nafasi kwa kila mtu – mwanamke na mwanaume aliye pembezoni na asiye pembezoni – kwenye ulingo wa kuzalisha na kukuza maarifa ya ukombozi wa wanawake kimapinduzi.

Karibu kwenye ulingo wa kutafakari kuhusu tunapotoka,tulipo,tuendako na namna ambavyo tutafika huko tuendako/Welcome to a platform for reflecting on where we are coming from, where we are, where we are going and how we will get there

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