No grand reception for Tanzania’s new cabinet

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation Abassador Augustine Mahiga takes oath

Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Cooperation Abassador Augustine Mahiga takes oath before President John Magufuli

There seems to be no limit to unnecessary things President John Magufuli of Tanzania can and will cut to save rein in out of control government spending. This Saturday Magufuli aimed his cost slashing at luxurious inaugural balls for the incoming cabinet.

Going against the norm in Dodoma, Magufuli scrapped the usual big money state banquet for his new cabinet after taking the oath of office.

Tanzania’s new cabinet was sworn in Saturday, but there was no feasting after the official ceremony,the ministers posed in a group photo with the president and then they were just serve juice for a snack.

President Magufuli order the Tsh 2 billion price tag that would have been spent on the huge stylish banquet be channelled to fund the country’s education for all program. The money will now be used to things like purchasing students textbooks and class desks among other things.

The head of state who has quickly earned regional and international kudos for his thrifty approach to governing instructed the new ministers to head straight to work. Never mind today is weekend, Saturday.
For instance, Deputy Minister for Health and Social Welfare Dr Khamis Kigwangara made unannounced visit to Ilala Municipal Hospital (Amana) in Dar es Salaam to study the state of the hospital two hours after taking oath.

Magufuli’s frugal measures thus far include suspending foreign travel for his ministers and top government officials, cancelling Independence Day celebrations this week and directing the money be spent on fighting cholera. Also this year the government will not be buying and sending out Christmas and New Year’s cards, he also saved Tanzanian taxpayers at least Sh 225 million earmarked for a state dinner during the opening of the 11th parliament. He decreed this money be used to buy hospital beds at Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) in Dar es Salaam.

Magufuli ordered the 20 billion shillings the government would have spent sponsoring the World Aids Day events be spent purchasing life enhancing drugs (ARVs) for the people living with HIV/Aids.

The Tanzanian leader has been congratulated on these efforts and the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) has requested Magufuli address it so regional lawmakers can learn a thing or two from him.

Dora Byamukama, Uganda’s Representative said last week “we should adopt the slogan of Hapa Kazi Tu (Magufuli’s let’s go to work here and now slogan) across the entire region.”

  • Kenyan

    Magufuli legacy will eclipse that of Nyerere. We have a great presidency in the making.