TZ to draw on Nyerere doctrine to adopt ‘new’ economic vision


Late Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, Former Tanzanian leader


In a bid to forge a ‘new’ economic path for the country, Tanzania recently launched the long awaited Nyerere Resource Center (NRC) for policy makers, researchers and the general public to refer to the policies of the country’s former Socialist president late Mwalimu Julius Nyerere.

The center was officially inaugurated by Tanzania’s former President Benjamin Mkapa last week at Dar es Salam at the Commission for Science and Technology (COSTECH).

During the discussions at the launching ceremony, top government officials, members of the academia, and representatives of the general public conceded Tanzania’s economy is not only in serious crisis but lacks a clear vision to guide it to prosperity.

A significant number of participants also suggested Arusha declaration (socialism-leaning) be reinstated if the nation is to get back on the right track.
The declaration states “A truly socialist state is one in which all people are workers and in which neither capitalism nor feudalism exists. It does not have two classes of people, a lower class composed of people who work for their living, and an upper class of people who live on the work of others.”


Professor Wangwe

Prof Samuel Wangwe, the Executive Director of Dar es Salam-based Research on Poverty Alleviation (REPOA) said during Nyerere era, there was a vision for building and protecting a strong state. “He (Mwalimu) believed in unity and solidarity. Now we’re all totally dependent on donors, we have sold our freedom.”

The leaders contend Tanzania’s current 2025 vision does not reflect economic realities of the country as most of the African countries adopting these development targets to attain middle income economies surprisingly have similar documents and policies.

In his remarks the NRC Director Prof Issa Shivji said the centre will honor the memory and advance the nationalist, socialist and Pan-African legacy of Mwalimu Nyerere.

“It will provide a dialogue platform for senior experts, politicians and academicians to deliberate burning issues of national interest.” he added.

Participants also decried the phenomenon of self-centered politicians and government officials who are out of touch with the ordinary citizen on the street.

“We need a system that will hold public leaders accountable,” said Octovian Joseph a student at University of Dar es Salaam.
He said the youth have been demoralized by a group of politicians turning their focus on getting money, rather than generating employment for the youths.