RECENTLY while meeting countrywide Ward Executive Officers (WEOs), in Dar Es Salaam, President John Pombe Magufuli was precise in his speech: “Don’t undermine yourselves and see yourselves as so weak.
As you leave here I want you go back to your places and say you are strong.
There should be no one to harass and devalue you.” This keenly analysed, shows that the group is a force to reckon with countrywide because they are also the government’s ombudsman and live with the common man at the grassroots, though many might be unaware.
These leaders of wards have an important role to play to ensure a successful implementation of government’s projects.
They identify and prevent any relationship that may lead to a conflict of interest between the government and the citizens.
These leaders live and know all citizens through their Village (read Cell), Executive Officers (VEO), implying that any foreigner who comes into the country at least must report or they have a clue.
These are the government’s eye at the grassroots and in the hierarchy must be relied on to weed out illegal immigrants and deliver state projects to the communities.
That is why the President assured them that they should not belittle themselves and stay aside in any government rolled out scheme in their midst.
However, it was also important to remind them to stay away from corruption especially on land issues, where some of them rob widows and vulnerable people their ancestral lands.
His meeting with them was a continuation of his earlier meetings with various government leaders with the sole aim of bringing all onboard in running state affairs, because Tanzania belongs to all.
He had already met with Regional and District Commissioners, Regional and District Administrative Secretaries and District Executive Directors.
His counseling to them that they have powers to take measures against any government officials, who would misbehave in their wards, shows that they are also suppose to take a lade in displaying honesty and as role models .
“For instance, there could be a leader having bad attitude of fighting in a bar. Use writings to report them to high authorities or write to me,” the President stated.
He went on instructing the ward leaders to get out of their offices and visit citizens for sake of hearing their problems and find solutions, something that would foster good relations between the government and the citizens.