Wednesday, June 10, 2009

TZ: We Are Poor Because…

I must admit that I check Issa Michuzi’s photo and what has become a “debate” blog religiously. Trust me; I “love” the John Mashaka and Dr. Shayo’s economic and development “debates”. I call them “debates” because they are not really debates. That is because it appears Michuzi has deliberately decided (for his own editorial reasons) to give John Mashaka and Dr. Shayo an upper hand.

Such a lopsided representation ain’t truly a debate, but a lecture room with a few hands given an opportunity to ask questions and respond to John Mashaka and Dr. Shayo’s “lectures”.

An example of such lectures from John Mashaka is this one…

I previously said I “love” Mashaka and Dr. Shayo’s “debates” because they just reflect the fact that someone can write a bunch of words and never bring a new discovery to light. Maybe it is just me, but I don’t like reading an article that states the obviously. For instance, who doesn’t know that part if the challenge in Tanzania, or in Africa for that matter, is poor leadership? If you are in Tanzania, do you really need some “wunderkind” in America to tell you that?

It is for that reason, I think, I tend to look for profound ideas in unlikely places.

I the above referenced “lecture” from John Mashaka, what caught my attention wasn’t the main article itself, but a comment dropped by one Mchumi wa Texas. I will just quote part of his or her brief comment:

We are poor because we don't know why were poor. That was the answer kutoka kwa JK alipokuwa Scandinavia, and that is my answer as an economist

Not to spoil Mchumi wa Texas’ moment, I would just like say that I don’t know about Kikwete saying that in Scandinavia, but I know he made that crazy remark during his interview with Financial Times. You can go here…

I would also like to remind you that Mwalimu Nyerere, before his departure, went on record wondering why Tanzania is still poor. Likewise, the Tanzania’s ex-PM, Mr. Sumaye, also went on record as saying that he “discovered” the gravity of Tanzania’s poverty after attending Harvard. [I don't know about you, but comments like that made want to slap Sumaye so bad. That comment was beyond stupid].

Just to support what Mchumi said, we can never solve a problem that is not well defined. I believe poor leadership is a reflection of a bigger issue, because leaders don’t sprout from space. They are part and parcel of the society they lead. As a matter of fact, some of my fellow human beings have contended that people get the leaders they deserve. If that is true, then we shouldn’t wag our fingers at our Tanzanian leaders. We should take a hard look at our own selves.

So go on fellow Bongolanders, join John Mashaka and Dr. Shayo in the development “debates”, but I tell you what? Ufisadi, Wakoloni, Wawekezaji, etc, which are Bongolanders typical excuses, are probably not our biggest enemies. Our biggest enemy is the inability to diagnose our problems properly. And that will cost the country for ages.

If you don’t trust me, visit this blog in 20 years. I will be aged, but Tanzania will still be the same.


Anonymous said...

Metty, I couldn't agree more when you said this:
I believe poor leadership is a reflection of a bigger issue, because leaders don’t sprout from space. They are part and parcel of the society they lead.
and this:
Our biggest enemy is the inability to diagnose our problems properly.
Adding to the last quote, 'we don't know how to prioritize. We are so much swayed by what others do, strangely, we do a copy & paste without knowing how and, if, it is going to work in our setting'. We really need a massive revamp from, and, within all sectors.
Thanks for your post Metty!

Anonymous said...

Metty, sijawahi kukubaliana na wewe zaidi ya mara hii. Hao akina mashaka kazi yao kuandika blaaa blaaa ambazo kila mtu anazijua tayari au pangine kukopi siasa za nje za nchi za magharibi.

Mfano mzuri anamshutumu Gadafi kwa shutuma ambazo kila mtu anazijua wakati huo huo wako viongozi wanachaguliwa "kidemecrasia" lakini hawana tofauti na huyo Gadafi.

Anonymous said...

Balozi wetu wa nje siku moja aliniambia kwamba sisi Tanzania hatuna cha kujifunza kutoka China! Huyo ni kiongozi mwenye PHD!!Hii generation ya viongozi wetu haitaweza.

Anonymous said...

Huyo balozi wako kanunua hiyo PhD kwene Factory, kila nchi ina cha kujjifunzi kutoka katika nchi nyingine. Kama nchi inafanya kitu fulani kizuri basi nchi zingine zinajifunza kufanya hilo jambo zuri, kama kinachofanywa na nchi fulani ni kibaya basi nchi zingine zinajifunza kwa kuepuka na makosa yaliyotendwa na nchi ilofanya jambo baya.

Kwa ivo kwa ujumla kila mtu au nchi ina chakujifunza kutoka kwa mwenzake bila kujali uwezo wa kiuchumi au kifedha wa mtu mwengine