IT is my belief that your Idd el Fitr celebrations went off smoothly and that you are ready to resume your day to day undertakings.
In front of me is a broadsheet, the Custodian, dated 4 June, which has a number of stories on what was transpiring in Parliament, before the Idd recess.
“Dodoma Region has serious shortage of teachers–Minister” is the headline on page 4.
A Member of Parliament is reported to have asked a question:
“What is the Government doing to end shortage of teachers with the increase population ‘of people’ in the Region following the Government ‘reallocation’ to Dodoma”?
The MP is reported to have argued that: “Dodoma Region needs 11,676 (?) basing on the student teacher ‘ration’ of 1:40 for primary schools noting that currently there are 7,383 teachers, thus the deficit is 4,410, being 38 per cent”.
In reply, the Deputy Minister with the primary and secondary education docket agreed:
“Dodoma Region faces serious shortage of teachers ‘even’ now that the government has relocated to the capital city”.
Dissecting what the Hon MP is reported to have said, we would like to point out that the words “people” and “population” mean the same thing so there is no need to use them together in the sentence.
There is also a difference between relocation, which means “moving to a different place”, and reallocation which means “to decide officially that something will be used for a different purpose’.
For example, funds set aside for use “A” could be reallocated to use “B”. As for the relation between teachers and students, the writer should have used “ratio”, not “ration”.
The latter means “a limited amount of something especially food”. Our rewrite of some of the MP’s observations is as follows: “What is the Government doing to end the shortage of teachers, considering the increase of the population in the Region following the Government ‘relocation’ to Dodoma”?
In the Deputy Minister’s reply, the word “even” is redundant and could be left out, or replaced by another set of words: “Dodoma Region faces serious shortage of teachers, more so now, that the government has relocated to the capital city”.
Still with the Custodian, page 3 of the paper has this article titled “Expansion of Kimara-Kiluvya road progressing well – govt”, whereby the Deputy Minister for Transport was required to give an update on the highway under construction.
He is reported to have said: “The project, aimed to reduce traffic jams on this road which serves more that 35,000 ‘cars’ out of which 40 per cent being trucks, which convey goods from Port of Dar es Salaam to landlocked countries”.
For a start, note that there are three ‘which’s in this short sentence.
Note also the missing measure to which the 35,000 ‘cars’ served should be related. Is it daily, weekly, monthly, or what?
My assumption is that we are talking of a daily happening. More serious, is the implication that “cars” include “trucks”.
We have pointed out the difference between the two before. Instead of “cars” the writer should have used “vehicles”, and the sentence could be rewritten as follows:
“The project, aims at reducing traffic jams on this road which serves more that 35,000 ‘vehicles’ daily, 40 percent of which are trucks conveying goods from the Port of Dar es Salaam to other parts of the country and to a number of countries in the Region”.
Some of the goods passing through the port of Dar es Salaam end up in the country so this needed to be captured. We have also avoided using the attractive word “landlocked” since some of the countries served by the Dar es Salaam port are not landlocked.
A landlocked country or area is entirely surrounded by land. This cannot apply for example to DRC which abuts the Atlantic Ocean on its Western side.
There are also good passing through Dar es Salaam that are destined to parts of Mozambique.
The Minister also pointed out that the Government was maintaining the old central railway line: “in effort to continue providing services, especially on ‘luggage’ transportation”.
I am sure the writer was not referring to “luggage” but to “cargo”.
The Government is maintaining the old central railway line: “in an effort to continue providing services, especially for cargo transportation”. Wishing you success, if you are fasting “the six”. l