Artificial intelligence, gas economy new priorities in 2024/25 

DODOMA: THE government has outlined new priority areas which will be integrated into the 2024/2025 development plans including artificial intelligence, gas economy and climate change opportunities specifically the area of carbon trade.

The new development comes following suggestions from Members of Parliament when the National Assembly sat as a committee for five consecutive days to debate the guidelines proposal for the National Development Plan and Budget for the 2024/2025 financial year.

The Minister of the State in the President’s Office –Planning and Investment, Professor Kitila Mkumbo, disclosed this yesterday in Parliament while clarifying some of the issues which arose during the discussions.

“Through the debate, I have learned a lot and got the chance to identify the needs of Tanzanians through their MPs… it is crystal clear that Tanzanians have smart and keen lawmakers.

“The contributions of the MPs have reflected upon the priorities of Tanzanians through the 307 issues presented…categorised into transport infrastructure (68 times), agriculture, livestock and fisheries (65 times), energy sector (36), tourism and conservation (38 times), industries (33 times), trade and investment (25 times), private sector (12 times), health, education and others (30 times),” said Professor Mkumbo.

Basically, it indicates that the country’s plans must take into consideration the above issues, noting that everything that the government does is aimed at ensuring that individuals and the entire country benefit.

The Minister noted the establishment of a livestock and fisheries agency and a rural development agency, noting that almost every sector possesses a governing body therefore the area of livestock and fisheries also needed attention.

He also emphasised on rural development, saying the MPs have been backing the matter. The country already possesses a good foundation in the area –citing the example of the Tanzania Rural and Urban Roads Agency (TARURA), whereby the rural road network  has rapidly expanded over the years.

Similarly, through the Rural Energy Agency (REA) majority of the villages have been electrified and water has continued to be widely accessible by rural dwellers through the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASA).

“The same applies to health care services…if our people are supported to access quality education, health care, reliable water supply as well as linked to a good road network their chance to embark on lucrative income generating opportunities is unquestionable,” he said.

Prof Kitila added: “We need to make use of this as a catalyst for growing the economies for our people and the country…that is why we have been stressing on the importance of attracting trade and investment in encouraging primary processing.”

He noted that having a clear focus in any country’s plans was very crucial, noting that Tanzania is among few countries in Sub-Saharan Africa with very few mortality cases.

Thus, he stressed on the importance of strengthening the country’s accountability systems, building the capacity of public servants and advocating for good morals for children.

On the other hand, he spoke on the issue of Tanzanians residing near conservation areas, saying on behalf of President Samia Suluhu Hassan and fellow leaders the government attaches great importance to people-centred development on top of everything.

He pointed out that the President values all Tanzania’s, emphasising that her directives have always dwelled on putting people at the centre.

“In circumstances where people-entered development contravenes the development of things, CCM always supports human dignity.

“The government will meet and deliberate on the issue of conservation in ensuring that the country’s parks do not become a source of chaos…our parks should value the lives of our people for people to do the same,” said Professor Mkumbo pledging to come up with an appealing answer to the problem.

For Tanzania is governed under the rule of law, he called upon all citizens to abide by the law, stating that in case of any loopholes in the country’s legislation the Parliament was present to make amendments.

For his part, Finance Minister Dr Mwigulu Nchemba directed government executives to take immediate measures against all public servants who will be implicated in siphoning public funds.

“There is no need to wait for the leaders to come to the district to take action against the employees involved in embezzlement while the District Commissioner, the Prevention of Combating Corruption Bureau (PCCB), OCD, courts of law and prisons are available in the respective areas,” he said.

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