Wednesday, May 27, 2009

On FemAct Statement on the ongoing UFISADI

Fellow Netizens

I guess it is about time, shall we say to pull our sleeves and get to work, get our hands dirty? No doubt it is time to say this (to grand corruption and the malpractice) is ENOUGH!

Most of us are still merely cheer leading the front line fighters - the likes of Slaa etc - from a distance and also distributing and disseminating, as we see it all unfolding, a call for action in the making perhaps, by the people, from the people, from the grass root, with our mothers and sisters at the lead, once again! Mwalimu once said, he made a deliberate choice, to leave the "politics" of complaining, and have a direct engagement to the issues of the day!

Hope is a great weapon for many, and we can't afford not to keep it alive. This is, this could be, this can lead to, what I may refer as, the second calling, the Declaration of Reclamation of Tanzania Independence!

With a listing and strong will denouncing of all that led to the delivery of failed hopes, all sins and grand corruptions as committed by various people in the positions of public authority, the failing of the government institutions and leadership to be seen, to be doing what is needed for the people, by the people, this could be, this can lead to, the second calling, the action for all, for the Declaration of Reclamation of Tanzania Independence from the network of corrupt practices

My salutes to FemAct and others for making this significant step.


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Fare-Thee-Well Tajudeen Abdul-Rahim

"I din't know him personally - thought will meet him in the Mwalimu Nyerere Intellectual Festival where he was supposed to be in a roundtable discussion but somehow he couldn't make it - but its always saddening when I hear this happening to the finest sons and daughters of Africa. May comfort sojourn with his bereaved family. May consolation encompass his cristfallen comrades. And may all those he inspired while alive and those he will inspire from now onwards take a baton from him and keep fighting the good fight for the emancipation of Africa and its Diaspora. AMEN - THAT IT MAY BE SO!"

- Chambi Chachage, Dar es Salaam

"This man was so pasionate about the continent. Without cynicism,he was so in touch with daily struggles of the ordinary people. Just out of luck, I started reading Dr Tajudeen's newspaper articles during my secondary school days in early 2000.The humour ,seriousness, human picture and satire with which he passed across his literary messages have since made me think that I knew him personally. That thought that we were friends with this intelligent and resourceful son of Africa made me proud and stable in my pursuit for information on what really affects the grass root human beings as they struggle for comfortable lives.

Tajudeen,RIP,-but the thing is that you live on."

- Orton Kiishweko, Dar es Salaam

"Oh what, a blow! He was such a refined intellect, who spent his life working for Africa. I first met Dr Tajudeen as a Freshman at University, during our study circles where he was invited to give a speech on African Unity, with focus on the Congo Crisis. At that time, the Rwandan troops and Uganda troops were bombarding each other in Kisangani, with Prof Wamba dia Wamba held up in a small hotel being defended by Ugandan troops, while Zimbabwean and Angolan troops were dug in a few kilometers accross the Mighty Inga Dam and lined all the way up to Kinshasha, proping up the fragile DRC's Kabila regime. The Great Lakes Region was at War and Africa at a brink of collapse. He made such a motivating speech about the 'senselliness' of the war, droping a line about revolutionary ideology here and the vagaries of war there and a pint of humor combined with old African sayings here, that left all of us after the session inspired and proud to be Africans.

"The last time, I met him was at the White Sands Hotel, during again another regional conference on Peace and Conflict Resolution in Africa. He was the chair and the conference brought together people like the Frenchman Gerard Prunnier and others who had distinguished themselves in tracing and understanding the root causes of the conflicts in the region. The focus of this was the Conflict in Darfur. Dr Tajudeen, painfully left his Pan African Movement Office in Kampala to take up another position as coordinator for the Millenium Development Goals (MDGs) - Another noble cause for a noble. Since then, he was a regular guest speaker at Straight talk Africa, where I always listened to his analyses with Admiration.

"It is sad that he has died at a time when there is great debate in regards to whether the rich countries have done enough to ensure poor countries meet the targets of the MDGS. I am not sure what he was doing in Nairobi, but I will not be surprised if it was yet, another meeting for an African Cause! We will miss him, we can only seek solace in the victorian saying:

"'When strong men die, it is only their bodies that die. Their spirit lives on for many years long before they are gone.' Dr Tajudeen was a strong man, his body is dead but his spirit will leave on. My condolences go to the Widow and the Children-May God bless them."

- Moses Kulaba, Dar es Salaam

Sunday, May 24, 2009

When Barrick Gold's Capital Comes Dripping with Blood and Dirt!

As we re-act to Barrick Gold's Toxic Sludge into River Tigithe in North Mara, Tanzania lets pro-act-ively inform ourselves about what Barrick Gold is (un)doing in other countries that are also at the receiving end of Speculative Capital masquerading as Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs) by reading Barrick's Dirty Secrets and heeding the call for support from Rights Action and the call for protest from ProtestBarrick in the light of this famous statement in Karl Marx's Das Kapital 1867 Part VIII Volume 1 Chapter 31: "If money, according to Augier, 'comes into the world with a congenital blood-stain on one cheek,' capital comes dripping from head to foot, from every pore, with blood and dirt"!

When Activists become Soldiers: Mahmood Mamdani on Saviors and Survivors

In an interview entitled Mamdani: Teenage Activists of 'Save Darfur' - Child Soldiers of the West on Professor Mahmood Mamdani's new book on 'Saviors and Survivors', courtesy of Ruben Eberlein, Mamdani comes up with the following controversial statement that questions the underlying motives of some of our (moral) activism vis-a-vis (imperial) militarism: "I have pointed out that Save Darfur is not a peace movement but a mobilization for war, something clear from their slogans: ‘Out of Iraq, into Darfur’ or ‘Boots on the Ground’. When children and teenagers are mobilized in support for war, they should be seen as child soldiers, whether in Africa or America. The difference is that the mobilization around Darfur is not presented by Save Darfur as a political mobilization for war, but as a moral crusade – which is what makes it attractive to millions of people in the US. Save Darfur has many parallels with the War on Terror. One is presenting Save Darfur as a moral crusade rather than a political option. Second is obscuring the political and social causes of violence, instead claiming that violence is its own explanation, so that the only way to end violence is with more violence. Presumably, the difference is that ‘their’ violence is bad violence but ‘ours’ is good violence." Could it be that in our quest to be revolutionary activists we have become soldiers, nay, mercenaries?


When Hernando de Soto of Peru wrote his book 'The Mystery of Capital: Why Capitalism Triumph in the West and Fails Everywhere Else', a couple of Africa's leaders including our then very own President Benjamin Mkapa invited him to speak to our politicians on how to put his ideas into practice. A number of activists and intelllectuals protested/critiqued his approach that resulted in the introduction of the Property and Business Formalization Program (PBFP/MKURABITA) then funded/aided by Norway. Now Dambisa Moyo of Zambia has written a book entitled 'Dead Aid: Why Aid Is Not Working and How There Is a Better Way for Africa'. A couple of Africa's leaders including the rising anti-aid champion Paul Kagame have invited her to speak on how to put her ideas into practice. However, as the Financial Times' article on 'Opposition to anti-aid campaigners grows' notes, "activists are circulating detailed critiques of her ideas and mass mailing African non-government organisations to mobilise support against her." Follow that story which can be dubbed 'A Tale of Two Books' on how to make development work in/for Africa in the global context of the unholy trinity of 'Unsustainable Aid', 'Unequal Trade' and 'Unending Debt'!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

In Praise of the Obnoxious: National Geographic Adventure on Thomson Safaris in Tanzania!

A very dear friend recently alerted me about an article published in The Arusha Times of January 24, 2009. The article featured the praises showered on Thomson Safaris based in Boston in the United States of America by National Geographic Adventure.

I run into my home library and picked up the copy of the weekly newspaper. I read, ‘Thomson Safaris earned top ratings for National Geographic Adventure's 2009 Best Adventure Travel Companies on Earth, according to a press release by the company.’

The release added that for ‘the second year in a row, Thomson Safaris received among the highest honors for the African Safari category, including a 100 score for customer satisfaction. National Geographic Adventure recently featured the award-winning company in their February 2009 issue among other outfitters earning recognition.’

Judi Wineland, the New Zealander wife of Rick Thomson, is co-founder and co-director of Thomson Safaris. She gloated in the press release, ‘We are honored to receive such high marks from National Geographic Adventure and our guests.’

The chest thumper went on, ‘Nat Geo Adventure has done a tremendous job in providing a needed tool for travelers to find the best outfitters out there for their specific interests.’

How this praise escaped my prickly eyes when I first read the newspaper I cannot tell. I have been grounding the mortal combat the company and the Maasai are locked in.

In 1984 the Tanzanian state owned beer manufacturer, Tanzania Breweries Limited (TBL), applied for 100,000 acres in Sukenya, Ngorongoro. TBL wanted to grow barley on the land. Led by their then MP, Moringe ole Parkipuny, the Maasai attempted to reject in total the alienation of their land. They depended entirely on this land for pastures as well as water. Some leaders, fearing the state, gave TBL 10,000 acres instead.

Barley production, however, collapsed following intense opposition by the Maasai fully supported by harsh drought. By 1987 the barley project was closed down.

The Maasai continued to use communally the land and water from River Pololet as they did traditionally. TBL forged signatures of the Maasai to obtain a title deed and increased the area to 12,600 acres. In June 2006, TBL sold the 12,600 acres to Thomson Safaris, through its sister company.

Thomson Safaris wanted to do tourism business on the land. What does American law says if you buy a stolen property? You are a thief, I guess.

Banding together like poisonous warms, Thomson Safaris and the Tanzanian state have been violently and corruptly preventing the Maasai from accessing pastures and water. People are reportedly beaten, arrested and forced to pay fines for impounded livestock.

Victims of this weird situation are many. One of them is Shangai ole Putaa, a Maasai traditional leader. Putaa seriously opposed selling of their land to Thomson Safaris. In March 2007 President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania visited Ngorongoro District. It is said that Putaa, speaking on behalf of his fellow villagers of Soit Sambu in an internal meeting of the Tanzanian ruling party, made a brief and eloquent presentation to the President. He told the President, in graphic terms, to give the stolen land back to its rightful owners.

About six months later, on November 7, 2007, the police killed Putaa. The Government had a strange, but hardly surprising, explanation for the brutal killing. Basilio Matei, the Arusha Regional Police Commander, claimed that the ‘police officers said Putaa was understood to know where the guns were hidden and that, when they asked him to show them the spot in question, he tried to run away and that was when they shot him.’

James Lembikas, the Soit Sambu Village Chairperson, disagrees. ‘The police should find a better excuse; Putaa was the most respected person in the whole Maasai community, being a spiritual advisor and was always with the council of elders.’

The second victim is Lesinko ole Nanyoi. He was shot in the jaws on April 18, 2008. Both the Government and Thomson Safaris denied strenuously being responsible for his shooting. To this day the Tanzanian Government is still covering the mad shooter.

In fact on July 23, 2008 The Arusha Region Peace and Security Committee called a press conference which was chaired by Arusha Regional Commissioner. Government officials, one after another tried to distance the police force and Thomson Safaris from the shooting. They also said that the Tanzanian Government should not be held responsible about the mysterious death of Trent Keegan killed in Kenya on May 28, 2008. I have high definition footage of that press conference.

Incidentally, the shooting of Nanyoi attracted Trent Keegan, a sympathetic New Zealand-born photo-journalist living in Ireland, to Tanzania. Keegan attempted to investigate the conflict. On May 28, 2008 he was assassinated in Nairobi, Kenya. Prior to his killing, on May 16, 2008, Trent emailed his friend, Tim Gallagher, telling him ‘he was writing a story about a tribe that was being kicked off its land to make way for a safari park.’

Brian MacCormaic, an Irish volunteer teacher in Ngorongoro, was soon to be yet another victim. He now writes that he was contacted by Rick, and asked if he would meet with them to help them get to the truth. There was tension in the meeting.

Understandably Brian tried to leave to save his life. He was told that he was not allowed to leave. Suddenly, a Thomson Safaris vehicle sped into the compound and skidded to a halt beside Brian, raising a cloud of dust and loose gravel in the air. Before it had fully stopped, up to ten gunmen armed with guns jumped out, arresting him under the orders of the District Commissioner.

Thomson Safaris, like a host of other greedy land grabbers posing as investors, has support of the state. Terry Rice, a de facto spokesperson for the company, once wrote; ‘Rick Thomson and his wife, Judi Wineland, were invited last year to meet in New York City with President Kikwete in thanks for their investment in tourism in Tanzania!’ They even had this celebratory photo opportunity with the President!

Meanwhile Thomson Safaris is engrossed in a morass of lies. On January 31, 2009 The
Arusha Times
published a directive from its General Manager, Elizabeth McKee. McKee said that the company will lay ‘off 45 employees out of its 140 Arusha staff. The remaining ones will endure 10 percent cut from their usual monthly salary packages.’

McKee said in the directive to the obviously frightened staff that this was to be effective from the 1st of May, which is ironically the International ‘Labor Day.’ McKee claimed that tourists’ bookings had dropped by as much as 40 percent, a ‘serious economic blow’ to the company thus calling for measures to cut down overhead costs.

Around the time McKee was fixing two fingers up the noses of the 40 Tanzanians, on January 23, 2009 specifically, The Citizen quoted Ina Steinhiler, Sales and Marketing Manager of Thomson Safaris in Boston, crowing, ‘Few people are cancelling or postponing for economic reasons. We are more than pleased.’ Obviously Thomson Safaris had sinister objectives for retrenching the 40 workers.

Why it is using international financial crunch as an excuse for its acts of mindless vandalism is best known to it. What is clear is the record breaking mutual back scratching between the rich at National Geographic Adventure and those at Thomson Safaris.

It is shocking to the bones to read that the confused National Geographic Adventure heaped praises on such a brutal company owned and directed by greedy capitalists. Reading the color of the press release you get the impression of kith and kin defense.

The search engines have made authentic research possible. Not everything on the internet is true. However, an honest magazine wanting to elevate a company to sainthood should have been drawn to investigate with military precision its soon to be declared Saint.

Thus the praises bring to question the credibility of National Geographic Adventure. Next time it might as well nominate Adolf Hitler its greatest statesman of all times.

© Navaya ole Ndaskoi < > (+ 255 754 453 192)

Wavumbuzi Wetu Wanapotelea Wapi?

Mtaalamu mmoja wa usomaji alikwenda kutafiti hali ilivyo katika Shule ya Msingi Keko Magurumbasi. Hapo alikuta maktaba nzuri iliyokuwa na vitabu vya Mradi wa Usomaji wa Watoto (CBP). Pia alikuta vitu mbalimbali ambavyo vilikuwa vimetengenezwa na wanafunzi.

Kilichomvutia sana mtafiti huyo ilikuwa ni modeli ya Jiji la Dar-es-Salaam na Chuo Kikuu cha Dar-es-Salaam. Hakika modeli hii haikutofautiana kabisa na zile zinazotengenezwa na wanafunzi wa Chuo cha Ardhi au wa pale Kitivo cha Uhandisi. Lakini aliyeisanifu modeli hiyo hakuwa mwanafunzi au mhadhiri wa Chuo Kikuu. Alikuwa ni mwanafunzi wa Darasa la Saba!

Akiwa amejawa na hamasa, mtafiti huyo alimuuliza mwalimu aliyekuwa anasimamia maktaba hiyo kuhusu huyu mwanafunzi aliyekuwa na kipaji cha kusanifu majengo. ‘Ahh mazingira ya uswahilini hapa Keko sio mazuri kwa elimu’, mwalimu alisema kwa unyonge. ‘Sasa itakuwaje mwanafunzi huyu asipofaulu mtihani wa Darasa la Saba?’ aliuliza mtafiti kwa wasiwasi.

Jibu alilolitoa mwalimu linatoa mwanga kuhusu kile kinachowasibu wavumbuzi wengi hapa nchini. ‘Mhh ataishia kuwa sign writer mitaani’, alisema mwalimu kwa sauti ya kukata na kukatisha tamaa. Alisema hivyo baada ya kusisitiza kuwa wazazi wa eneo hilo lenye uhalifu sana aidha hawana uwezo wa kusomesha watoto wao sekondari au hawajali tu umuhimu wa elimu.

Sijui mwanafunzi huyo alifanikiwa kupata elimu ya sekondari. Wala sijui kama alifanikiwa kujiunga na elimu ya juu. Na kama hakujiunga na vyuo vikuu sijui kama alipata fursa ya kupata mafunzo ya ufundi kwenye vyuo vyetu vya ufundi stadi. Ninachojua ni kuwa katika mitaa ya jiji la Dar-es-Salaam kuna vijana wengi tu wenye vipaji kama hivyo na ambao hawana ajira rasmi.

Vijana hao huuza michoro yao ya usanifu majengo kwa staili ya kimachinga. Wengine naambiwa ni wahitimu wa vyuo vikuu. Lakini inawezekana kabisa kuwa wengine hawakubahatika kuyaona madarasa yanayotoa elimu ya juu. Kila ninapowaona vijana hawa huwa namkumbuka sana yule mwanafunzi wa zamani wa Shule ya Msingi Keko Magurumbasi.

Huwa najiuliza kama naye ni miongoni mwa vijana hawa wanaouza michoro yao ya usanifu mitaani bila kuwa na soko la uhakika. Napowaona ‘sign writers’, yaani wasanii wanaochora alama na michoro mbalimbali, huwa najiuliza kama ule unabii hasi wa mwalimu ulitimia na kama ulitimia ni kwa kiasi gani kazi hii inamsaidia kutopoteza kipaji chake cha usanifu majengo.

Juma hili maswali haya yamezidi kunitatiza baada ya nusu mwaka kupita bila mhitimu wa shahada ya ‘honors’ ya sayansi ya biolojia ya kimolekyuli na teknolojia ya biolojia (‘molecular biology and biotechnology’) kupata ajira. Waajiri kadhaa wanamjibu kuwa teknolojia yetu iko chini sana hivyo hawana kazi anayoweza kuifanya au hakuna vifaa vya kutosha katika maabara.

Kilichonitatiza zaidi ni kile nilichokigundua baaada ya kumshauri aende Chuo Kikuu basi kusomea shahada ya juu ili akafundishe mpaka hapo kutakapokuwa na nafasi ya kutumia elimu yake kwenye mashirika ya utafiti wa tiba za kibiolojia. Niligundua hata shahada yao ya pili ni marudio tu ya yale aliyoyasoma na tena haigusii kwa kina masuala ya bioteknolojia. Kwa nini?

Lo nikajikuta nakubali kuwa ni kweli kuna wataalamu wetu ambao wanalazimika kutukimbia kwa kuwa hatuna nafasi kwa ajili yao. Siku zote nilikuwa nalaani kitu ambacho wanakiita ‘brain drain’, yaani, ile hali ya watalaamu wetu kwenda kutumia bongo zao kufanya kazi nchi za nje na kutufanya tupungukiwe na wataalamu. Lakini do kumbe huwa tunawapoteza humu humu nchini!

Sasa kuna wanaomshauri mhitimu huyu akafanye kazi yoyote na sio lazima ihusiane na utaalamu aliousomea. Lakini utamaduni huu ndio umesababisha tupoteze fursa ya kuendelea kisayansi na kiteknolojia. Hii ndio hali halisi ya Tanzania iliyomfanya Erasto Mpemba asiwe Mwanafizikia!

Alipokuwa mwanafunzi wa Kidato cha Pili katika Shule ya Sekondari ya Magamba, Mpemba alivumbua kitu ambacho kilikuwa hakijulikani kabla. Aligundua kuwa katika hali fulani maji ya moto huganda haraka kabla ya maji ya baridi. Alipofika Kidato cha Tano katika Shule ya Sekondari Mkwawa aliweza kuuelezea uvumbuzi huo kwa mtaalamu wa Fizikia ambaye aliuchapisha pamoja naye ambapo waliuita ‘Mpemba Effect’, yaani, ‘Taathira ya Mpemba’!

Na yule mwanafunzi wa Chuo Kikuu aliyegundua namna ya kupunguza maisha ya mbu wa malaria kwa kutumia mnyoo fulani ameishia wapi? Mara ya mwisho nilisikia akisifiwa kwenye vyombo vya habari ambapo Serikali ilisema itahakikisha uvumbuzi huo unaendelezwa na unatambuliwa kimataifa. Ila nilipoitembelea tovuti fulani niliona kuwa sehemu kubwa ya sifa hizo zimechukuliwa na taasisi fulani ya nje ya nchi ambayo inasemekana ilisimamia utafiti huo!

Baada ya Rais Kikwete kuhutubia wahandisi mnamo Septemba, 2008 ambapo alisisitiza tusomeshe wahandisi niliandika makala iliyohoji ‘wako wapi hao maelfu ya wahandisi tuliokwishawasomesha?’ Jibu lililopatikana ni kuwa wengi wameacha kazi ya uhandisi na wengine wameenda ughaibuni kwenye maslahi na tija zaidi. Mimi binafsi nawafahamu wengi tu.

Tufanye nini basi ili tusipoteze wataalamu wetu? Jibu ni rahisi. Tuwekeze katika rasilimali watu!

© Chambi Chachage – Mwananchi (19 Mei 2009)

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Kiswanglishi kiwe Lugha Rasmi ya Taifa

Sikuplani kuandika makala hii wiki hii. Sikupanga kufanya hivyo hasa ukizingatia kuwa juma hili kuna ishu nyingi zinazochukua taimu yetu sana. Suala la mafisadi papa ni mojawapo ya hayo masuala yanayochukua muda wetu mwingi.

Nilichenji, yaani nilibadili, mawazo yangu baada kusikiliza kipindi cha Redio Wani. Katika programu hiyo watalaamu walikuwa wakidibeti, yaani wakijadiliana, kuhusu matumizi ya lugha ya kufundishia. Hoja iliyonitachi, yaani iliyonigusa, sana ni ile inayosema kuwa matumizi ya lugha ya Inglishi, yaani Kiingereza, kufundishia yanasababisha wanafunzi wengi wasipate elimu.

Hakika ni jambo lisilopingika kuwa maticha, yaani walimu, wengi hawajui kufundisha kwa lugha hii kwa namna inayowafanya madenti, yaani wanafunzi, waelewe wanachofundishwa. Risechi, yaani tafiti, nyingi zimefanywa na watafiti wa ndani na nje ya nchi yetu kuonesha kuwa kutumia lugha isiyoeleweka vizuri kufundishia kunasababisha wanafunzi wasielewe vizuri somo.

Lakini pamoja na ukweli huo bado tunang’ang’ania kutumia Kiingereza kufundishia kuanzia Skuli, yaani Shule, za Sekondari hadi kwenye Vyuo Vikuu. Wengine tumeamua kabisa kuwa na shule za msingi zinazotumia Kiingereza kufundishia. Eti hatutaki watoto wetu wakose chansi, yaani fursa, ya kujua lugha ya globalaizisheni, yaani utandawazi, kana kwamba lugha yetu ya Kiswahili yenye maneno lukuki ya Kiarabu, Kiingereza na Kireno nayo sio lugha ya utandawazi!

Ni kweli kabisa kuwa sisi na watoto wetu tunapaswa kuijua lugha ya Kiingereza. Lakini njia ya kujifunza Kiingereza kizuri cha kuongea na kuandika sio kwa kukitumia kama lugha ya kufundishia katika jamii ambayo haikijui vyema. Ndio maana watoto wetu na hata viongozi wetu wanachanganya sana Kiingereza na Kiswahili wanapozungumza. Sasa hicho ni Kiingereza gani?

Wapo wanaokiita Kiswanglishi. Lakini, je, ni Kiswanglishi kweli? Hapana! Hicho ni Kiswahili kinachobadilika ghafla katikati ya sentensi au mazungumzo na kuwa Kiingereza au Kiingereza kinachobadilika ghafla na kuwa Kiswahili. Naam ni ‘Kiswahili English’ au ‘English Kiswahili.’ Wataalamu wa lugha wanauita mtindo huo ‘code switching’ yaani kubadilibadili lugha katikati.

Kiswanglishi nachotaka kiwe lugha ya Taifa ni kipi basi? Ni hicho ambacho kimetumika katika sentensi za mwanzo za makala hii. Hiyo ni lugha ambayo Watanzania wengi, waliopo mijini na vijijini, wanakitumia. Kwa mfano, Bibi yangu amewahi kuniambia “ukifanya hivyo utadedi” akimaanisha ‘ukifanya hivyo utakufa.’ Hicho ndio Kiswanglishi halisi maana ni Kiswahili kilichokopa neno ‘dead’ kutoka kwenye ‘English’ na kulifanya liwe neno ‘dedi’ la Kiswahili.

Mifano ya jinsi tunavyotumia Kiswanglishi cha aina hii katika maandishi na mazungumzo yetu ya kila siku ni mingi. Hii ni baadhi tu: “nakwenda jobu kisha naenda shoping’ tauni”; “najiandaa na pepa kisha naenda kupata menu”; “yule sista/braza atakupa data zote unazohitaji.” Hiki ndicho Kiswanglishi kinachopaswa kuwa lugha ya Taifa maana ndicho Kiswahili chenyewe.

Hakika “Kiswahili sio Kreoli wala Pijini”. Sentensi hii imeganda kichwani kwangu toka Mwalimu wangu wa Kiswahili alipoitamka na kuiandika ubaoni nilipokuwa Sekondari. Kwa ufupi, alikuwa ana maana kuwa pamoja na kwamba Kiswahili kimeazima maneno kutoka lugha nyingine - kama vile Gari na Duka kutoka kwenye Kihindi, Mvinyo na Meza kutoka kwenye Kireno, Malaika na Shetani kutoka kwenye Kiarabu, Skuli na Hela kutoka kwenye Kijerumani - bado ni lugha kamili inayofuata mnyambuliko wake wenyewe wa maneno wa Kibantu.

Hivyo Kiswanglishi cha kweli ni Kiswahili cha Utandawazi - kinachokopa na kukopesha sana maneno. Ni Kiswahili kinachokubali kuchukua ama kukopa maneno mapya ya Kiingereza na kuyafanya yawe ya Kiswahili cha Kibantu na yaweze kutumika katika sentensi ya Kiswahili cha Kibantu. Kwa mfano, Kiingereza kikitumia ‘dead’ kinasema ‘s/he is dead’, ‘s/he will die’ na ‘s/he is dying’ lakini Kiswahili kikilikopa neno hilo kitasema ‘amededi’, ‘atadedi’ na ‘anadedi.’

Kwa kukonkludi, yaani kuhitimisha, napenda kutoa wito kuwa tuidhinishe Kiswanglishi, kama kilivyotafsiriwa katika makala hii, kitumike kama lugha rasmi hasa shuleni na vyuoni. Tukifanya hivyo tutashangaa kuona lugha yetu inakua, elimu yetu inapanuka na jamii yetu inapata maendeleo maana lugha ya mawasiliano ni chachu ya kuongeza ujuzi, maarifa na uelewa mpana.

Naam Kiswahili na kiendelee kutandawaa kwa kasi katika zama hizi za utandawazi kama kilivyotamalaki enzi zile tulipofanya biashara zenye tija na Waaajemi, Waarabu na Wachina bila kutegemea lugha zao. BAKITA na TUKI mpo? Kubalini yaishe: 'Kiswahili = Kiswanglishi'!

Visawe Vipya Virasimishwe

Yuthi Visheni asante kwa kuendeleza dibeti hii. Hiyo hasa ndio misheni ya makala yangu ya wazi, yaani, kuendelea kuchochea mjadala wa kisera ila katika namna ambayo utaliangalia upya - kwa mtazamo wa Kiswanglishi - suala la lugha ya kufundishia ambalo linarudisha sana nyuma maendeleo yetu.

Kwenye Kiswahili kuna maneno yanaitwa 'Visawe'. Katika Kiingereza maneno haya yanaitwa 'Synonyms'. Kwa ufupi, visawe/synonyms ni maneno yenye maana sawa au maana zinazokaribiana sana. Lugha yoyote inayokua haijifungi kuwa na neno moja linalowakilisha kitu fulani. Hivyo unakuta lugha kama Kiingereza ina maneno kama (1) eat (2) consume (3) munch ambayo yote yana maana sawa au zinazokaribiana na yanaweza kutumika kuelezea tukio hilo hilo moja,yaani 'kula'. Kama unatumia Microsoft Word njia rahisi ya kuziona hizi synonyms ni kukliki/kubonyeza kitufe cha kulia cha mausi/mouse yako kwenye neno husika na utaona chaguo la 'synonyms' na ukilibofya hilo utapata hayo maneno mengine yenye maana sawa na hilo neno.

Matumizi haya ya visawe/synonyms utaona yanaonesha kuwa hoja yako hapo chini haikubaliani na hali halisi ya ukuaji wa lugha ya Kiswahili na matumizi yake la kila siku. Kiswahili unachokiongelea hapo chini, ambacho mimi nakiita 'Kiswanglishi' kinachochanganya maneno kukitofautisha na 'Kiswanglish' kinachochanganya lugha, kina visawe vingi tu. Hapa nina 'Kamusi ya Visawe: Swahili Dicitionary of Synonyms' iliyotungwa na Mohamed A. Mohamed & Said A. Mohamed na kuchapishwa hapa Afrika Mashariki na East African Educational Publishers. Kwa mujibu wa Dibaji yake, Kamusi hii ina visawe visivyopungua 71,000. Maneno ya Kiswahili yanayotupa hivi visawe ndio maneno hayo hayo tuliyochukua kwenye lugha za Kiarabu, Kiingereza, Kireno, Kijerumani, Kihindi na kwenye lugha mbalimbali za Kiafrika. Ila kama nilivyosisitiza kwenye makala yangu ya wazi, kwa sasa tunachukua maneno mengi zaidi kutoka kwenye Kiingereza. Hivyo basi, sioni kwa nini tusitumie maneno hayo, yakiwemo ambayo ni visawe kama hivyo ulivyovitaja hapo chini, na kuvirasimisha ili tuvitumie kama sehemu ya lugha yetu ambayo kwa sasa inazidi kuwa Kiswanglishi kuliko ilivyo 'Kiswarabu'.

Nahitimisha hoja yangu kwa kutoa mifano kadhaa ya visawe na tofauti kati ya 'Kiswanglishi = Kiswahili' na 'Kiswanglish = Anglo-Kiswahili':

- Kiswanglish: Nakwenda kula chakula then I'll go to town alafu nitarudi kazini, of course I will see you there (Sentensi hii imechanganya lugha mbili)
- Kiswanglishi: Nakwenda kupata menu kisha nitaenda tauni alafu nitarudi jobu, naam tutaonana hapo (Sentensi hii inanyambulika Kibantu/Kiswahili)
- Visawe vya Kiswarabu: salimu,amkia, amkua sabahi, lahiki (maneno yote haya yana maana sawa na hutumika kwa kubadilishana)
- Visawe vya Kiswanglishi: televisheni, runinga, tivii (maneno yote haya yana maana sawa na huweza kutumika kwa kubadilishana)


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Rethinking Prof. Shivji's 'Silences in NGO Discourse: The Role and Future of NGOs in Africa'

Dear Wanazuoni,

In the wake of a belated realization among some of our development workers about how NGOs have taken away CITIZEN agency, there has been a renewed interest in the attached critique. Recently I received an email asking me how far some of us who are involved with NGOs have engaged with this critique after the author of that email was shocked upon reading the critique. Now I am not sure if we have shared this critique here before but I was impressed by a Kenyan activist who emailed it to me yesterday and inspired me to send (if not resend) it to you. Indeed we need to rethink the role(s) of NGOs given that we have a CITIZENRY that can ashamedly say 'I can't do this or that, I am waiting to be empowered' while back in the days CITIZENS mobilized themselves without necessarily depending on any DONOR money to do their thing - remember those COMMUNITY works and other iniatives. Yes, I am talking in general terms but that generality applies to a lot of specific places and people. Lets bring back CITIZEN AGENCY!

P.S. Hardcopies of the critique are available at HAKIARDHI so contact Mwanazuoni Bernard Baha - HAKIARDHI <>


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