Author: FLORENCE MUGARULA
AfricaPress-Tanzania: CCM presidential candidate Dr John Magufuli has promised to continue strengthening the country’s economy through establishing and reviving industries.
Equally, he pledged to continuously improve key infrastructures to facilitate business operations for economic growth.
Dr Magufuli, who was addressing voters at the jam-packed Korogwe Teachers Training College, said Tanga is among regions that need special attention for economic transformation.
He said that if re-elected in the next Wednesday’s polls, his government will focus on reviving various major projects in the region that will make Tanga powerful again.
Tanzania will hold the 2020 General Election on October 28th, this year, through which Tanzanians will elect their President, Members of Parliament and Councillors.
With exactly a week before the much-awaited polls, the incum whobent leaders reminded voters of achievements recorded during his first five-year tenure, while unveiling his future plans for the country.
He said Tanga was among leading regions in industries with a well-functioning port, and that many Tanzanians were employed in various sectors in the area.
However, Dr Magufuli said, at some point the economic activities collapsed, industries were shut down and businesses crumbled.
According to Dr Magufuli, in the past five years, his government focused on rebuilding systems, strengthening the economy and setting a good environment of doing business.
He said the government had for five years strived to retain the lost glory in various areas including Tanga, which used to provide employment to Tanzanians.
Tanga was rich in sisal production with a thousand acres of plantations that employed a number of wananchi from various parts of the country.
“In those years, Tanga was strong economically, we had many operating industries here, the port was working and the railway was intact, everyone wanted to work here (Tanga),” he noted.
Dr Magufuli said during the past five years, his government invested in infrastructure in the region including improving Tanga port, reviving the Northern Railway line, construction of roads that link Tanga and other regions as well as reviving and establishing industries.
“We are doing all these because we understand the potential of Tanga, we want a strong Tanga again,” he said.
According to Dr Magufuli, the fifth-phase government also managed to sign an agreement with Uganda for the construction of the oil pipeline from Hoima, Uganda to Tanga which will significantly boost economic activities of the sea port region and the country at large.
“The pipeline is coming in this region, some districts such as Kilindi, Handeni, Muheza, Tanga and Korogwe will directly benefit from the project because the pipeline passes in these areas,” he said.
The 1445km pipeline project is implemented at a cost of over 8tri/-.
Dr Magufuli said if re-elected, his government will turn Tanga into a business hub and asked voters to elect all candidates on CCM tickets, so that they can work together to bring great changes.
Dr Magufuli also said his government invested in other areas including education, health, agriculture and many others.
The government used 17.4bn/- in building an emergency ward and a dialysis department at Bombo Regional Hospital in Tanga, he revealed, adding that five district hospitals were built in Muheza, Tanga, Korogwe and Lushoto. 22 health centres and five dispensaries were also built in the area in the past five years.
Meanwhile, a total of 64 big water projects were implemented in the region, with a whopping 200bn/- allocated for the implementation of a water project in Pangani River, expected to kick off next year.
518 villages have so far been supplied with electricity in the five years and the remaining 271 villages are set to be connected soon, said the ruling party’s presidential flag-bearer.
Earlier, Ms Ummy Mwalimu, who is contesting Tanga Urban parliamentary seat, said the fifth-phase government has set a unique record in the health sector in the past five years.
He said the number of maternal deaths dropped from 11,000 to 3000, while infant mortality rate dropped from 67 to seven in every 1000 deliveries. She said the sector has been improved due to huge investment made by the fifth government.
A number of dispensaries, health centres, hospitals and referral hospitals were built in the past five years. She said over 150 ambulances were purchased by the government in the last five years.
Later during the day, Dr Magufuli held another campaign rally at Same district in Kilimanjaro region, where he issued a 30 days ultimatum to the contractor for Nyumba ya Mungu dam to speed up the water project.
He said failure to show progress in 30 days, the contractor risks losing the tender. He said the project was supposed to be completed in 2017 but until now it is still under construction.
He also ordered the Deputy Minister for Water and his experts to make a follow up on the matter.
“I order you to stay here and make a follow up on this matter. If you got the contractor through falsely means, I will take serious measures, you must work together to end this problem,” he said.
“This is one of the most expensive projects, it is worth 264bn/-, it must be implemented effectively and with all required standards,” noted Dr Magufuli.
Meanwhile, Dr Magufuli asked the public to remain calm and respect the law as the country heads to general election next week. Dr Magufuli promised to maintain the country’s peace and unity.