SOME beneficiaries of the Productive Social Safety Net (PSSN) in Njombe region have requested the government to improve business environment in their areas in order to make their activities more profitable.
PSSN programme is part of over 300 government’s development projects worth about 13.1bn/, being implemented by Tanzania Social Action Fund (TASAF) in the region.
The beneficiaries were given capital by TASAF to enable them engage in various income generating activities. Their focus was to switch from small scale to medium and large investments.
They, however, asserted that poor business environment was among challenges that denied them an opportunity to excel further.
One of the programme’s beneficiaries in Ramadhani Ward of Njombe Town Council, Mr Awadi Mwafungo who has managed to establish a footwear factory at his residence aired his views that: “Personally, I started with 40,000/- capital and succeeded to continue accumulating it up to nearly 400,000/- right now despite poor working environment. I want to expand my business.
The only problem I face right now is lack of decent trading area. I have no problem with markets as I receive enough orders from neighbouring regions, particularly Ruvuma and Mbeya,” he said.
He began with manufacturing five pairs of shoes per day, but currently, he revealed that he was able to manufacture between 25 and 30 pairs --assuring that he can make up to 40 or 50 pairs, if he acquires enough capital.
Mr Mwafungo plans to create employment opportunities in the area should he acquire enough capital for business expansion.
The same views were also echoed by PSSN beneficiaries in Lupila Ward in Makete District who deals with potatoes irrigation farming and eyes introducing a processing factory.
The idea of establishing a processing factory was due to the fact that the farmers lacked proper markets for their fresh potatoes, according to Ukange village Community Management Committee (CMC) Chairperson Mr Erasto Ndelwa.
“Irrigation farming allows us to have potatoes throughout the year as we don’t directly depend on rains. There is high production here but no reliable markets for our fresh products.
We usually conduct these activities in groups and we have already accumulated the capital but that is not enough as we want to expand our activities,” he said.
The government’s 13.1bn/- development projects in Njombe targeted areas of agriculture, livestock, road infrastructures, health, education and income generating activities, according to TASAF Communication Officer, Mr Estom Sanga.