I hope I am not alone on this one. So don’t front. I know you have received your mama’s whopping now and then. If not your pops or mom, mwalimu wa zamu had a feast on your butts or hands with a number canes. This could be considered some sort of abuse by today’s standards, but I went through it.
One of the ways that I learn is to read and reflect on what other have to say. As a matter of fact, I think the entire global education is based on others’ ideas and insights. Just think of Mr. Newton in Physics. I know the stuff he brought to light would have been discovered by some other crazy genius, but thus far he is attributed to the Laws of Motion. Just pay a visit to a bookstore or library; you will get what I mean. These joints are full of ideas – other people’s ideas to be precise, that are nicely put together into a binding called a book.
What’s my point? We learn through others.
So the other day I was going through Kitururu’s blog and I came across this particular post.I didn’t run out on the streets naked, but I surely got mentally stimulated. Essentially, Simon’s reflection was on whether at some point, just like babies, nations should mature and stop acting like infants.
I really don’t have any concrete answer to Simon’s challenge, but I think it is worth paying a serious attention to. See, I have personally been an advocate for developing countries, Tanzania in particular, taking responsibility for their state of affairs. I don’t believe that being on the West’s welfare recipient list will ever improve anything in Tanzania. That is due to the fact that Tanzania has received an astronomical amount of grants and financial aid in the past, but there is no evidence of improvement in the lives of ordinary, poverty-stricken Tanzanians.
I can see the spirit behind financial aid to developing countries, so I can’t say financial aid to poor countries is meaningless. In a spirit of brotherhood, financial aid is necessary to jumpstart a needy brother’s vitality. Nonetheless, we have to be honest with ourselves; aid flowing to Tanzania is not helping. If it does, it is helping to fatten the pockets of a few crooks. I believe that aid is just strengthening a beggar’s mentality and a growing justification for dependency.
It is true that countries do not develop at the same rate you would expect natural human beings to grow. Things take a while. As such 46 years of political independence for a country like Tanzania, in a wider perspective, is not much. I would equate that to a 7 or 10 years old kid. Despite the young age of Tanzania, relatively speaking, there should be signs of maturity. We would expect that a 10 years old kid to know how to read and write. You don’t expect a ten year old kid that stopped wetting their bed at four (4) years of age to revert back to those bad habits, would you? Then why Tanzania is going back to fiscal indiscipline year after year? My point is this: there are things that Tanzania should be doing right now, given her age. I don’t think a nation ought to be over 300 years old to understand that spending money on expensive cars while there are no good roads is stupid.
I know this will probably not go anywhere, but I will go ahead and suggest it anyway. Financial aid to developing countries should be phased out. These countries are out to mature and grow. At some point the West has to stop babysitting countries that are deliberating wetting their pants and crying like little kids. Tanzania is included on that list. Look, Uganda decided to grow and growing they are doing. So we can’t justify our low GDP while we have plenty of resources.
Tanzanian is growing a moustache, but we still insist on breastfeeding. That is a mega shame. So Mr. Simon Kitururu, I think you are right. At some point, age limit should be set on countries from receiving certain financial aid. Writing a blank check to Tanzania, for instance, is senseless. If that doesn’t stop, we’ll continue wetting our pants while we should be courting for marriage.
You think I am alone? Even the Tanzania former president, Mr. BWM, is getting the fact that African countries are ought to grow (though I wonder why he is providing such wonderful insights that he couldn’t fully implement while in power). Guess what? Even IMF is starting to think that Tanzania should come of age.
What do you think?