When President John Magufuli assumed the leadership of the country in 2015, most people hoped that his ministerial background in infrastructure will reflect in the country.
They have so far not been disappointed, because the president hit the ground running, initiating major projects which include construction of major roads and flyovers.
In Dar es Salaam, residents and visitors continue to witness major constructions going on, which includes the Ubungo flyover which is almost 100 per cent complete, and the construction of the Ubungo Kibaha highway, among many other projects.
For a first time visitor in the city, the presence of major highways, bridges and flyovers makes them realise that in terms of infrastructure, Tanzania is making great strides at a very fast pace.
For someone who left the country in 2015, from the moment they land at the airport, they will realise that a lot has changed, especially if they take a tour of Mfugale Flyover in Tazara, all the way to the Ubungo interchange, and finally move to Mwenge heading towards the city centre.
And for people who have been fortunate enough to visit other major cities in Africa, they will be forced to realise that when JPM is finally done with changing the outlook of the country, Dar es Salaam city will stand out as among the contenders of the most advanced cities in Africa.
However, much as the government strives to change the whole setup of the country’s infrastructure, and much as JPM has the interest of Tanzanians at heart, something should be done to control the mushrooming makeshift structures by small traders.
When you pass the Ubungo interchange, the feeling that you are in a major city in Africa will be brought to a violent halt by the presence of the small traders, who cover both sides of the busy roads.
The ambiance of the new roads and the paved sidewalks is usually spoiled by the makeshift structures put up by these traders, making pedestrians have a tough time walking on the side streets.
It is only fair to say that these people are trying to make ends meet, but I think it would be appropriate to designate them to special areas where they can conduct their businesses in peace, which will help to expose the beauty of the new roads, some of which are still under construction, which will make the city attractive to both local residents and visitors.