PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa has called on religious leaders to invest more in youth through their sermons and condemn all harmful practices that do not adhere to the values of the nation.
He made the remarks yesterday at the inauguration ceremony of Bishop Dr Msafiri Mbilu, Bishop of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ELCT) North East Diocese, Lushoto.
“Let us not forget that HIV is still prevalent, many young people are at risk of contracting the virus. On that basis, use your role in the community to provide counselling and ultimately reduce the rate of infection among the youth,” said the Premier, who attended the service on behalf of President Samia Suluhu Hassan.
He said the government recognises and values the great work and responsibilities of church leaders, which include guiding people spiritually and providing them with instruction, advice and faith-building.
Mr Majaliwa further said religious leaders needed to preach youth issues as their messages are well received in the community and people of all ages thus it is crucial to continue to help people in various difficulties especially those in need such as orphans and widows.
The Prime Minister also used the opportunity to urge the leaders to continue to provide sermons that encourage people to maintain peace and stability in the country for the benefit of present and future generations.
He said the government recognises that the development of the country cannot go without cooperation with the private sector and because of this; the government has been cooperating with them including religious institutions in providing various services to the community and bringing national development.
He said the government has been working with the diocese in providing health services through its hospitals in Bumbuli, Kilindi and Lutindi Mental Hospital by providing medicine, medical equipment as well as bringing doctors and staff into those hospitals to ensure all people receive appropriate services timely.
“I would like to take this opportunity to assure you that the government will continue this partnership for the benefit of all Tanzanians,” he said.
For his part, Bishop Mbilu thanked the Prime Minister for attending the service and assured him that their Diocese will continue to work with the government in bringing development to the people as well as maintaining peace.