On the basis of that I have decided to make a candid follow up on the implementation of all the promises that were made by our political leaders. In simple language,making those leaders accountable for their promises made to the public and would use my column to appraise or remind them of unimplemented promises. But that was for the calendar year of 2011, I think it could make more sense if I were to do it for the financial year that is June 2011 to July 2012.
Lest we forget, there were those thirteen sticky issues in which JK promised to deal with them when he inaugurated the Parliament in December 2010; hopefully they are getting on well in implementation.When setting his agenda on that day, JK confirmed that in his last five years he wants Tanzania to have a modern economy categorized as a country with a middle class economy, possibly with araised per capita income.
Normally countries with middle class economy have a capita income of US$ 3,000. Well, we are told our country is one of those few countries with the fastest growing economy in the world. So, are we on track? This was also confirmed by the then Minister for Finance Mustafa Mkulo when he said that Tanzania is not different from countries such as Kenya, Ghana and Guinea Bissau who were aspiring to becoming middle class economies.
Yes the Parliamentarians with Members of the Cabinet are already in Dodoma taking part in the budget session for the year 2012/2013 taking stock what was done in the previous year and what should be done for the following financial year.This is a very important period of the year for every Tanzanian as it is a budget session of the Bunge. We expect serious hard talk on how best our legislators will advise the government on our behalf how best to spend the scarce resources against the abundant demands of the country.
Unfortunately like last financial year, the budget session comes in the wake of difficult times, in terms of high rising cost of living and sporadic increases of prices of staple food that include maize flour, sugar, beans and other items like gasoline. Indeed some of these difficulties are the result of imported inflations, originating from outside our country and nothing can be done to stop them perhaps cushioning them with the government subsidies.
How do we get out of this imbroglio and yet march faster to the promised middle class economy? This year’s long budget session promises fury discussions among the parliamentarians on the approval of the state budget and that of some ministries’ estimates which seem to have been underfunded on development projects.
Tax evasion and exemptions have annoyed even the clergymen who put the figure to Tsh. 1.7trilion loss and the delay in remittance from donor funding have led to under performance of our economy. With such a situation, are we still in line with our worked out five year development plan of our Vision 2025? Not surprisingly the National Planning Commission has been reinstituted to monitor and coordinate the development projects that are panacea to the implementation of the Vision 2025 in five years’ peace meals.
We are already minus one year now in the First Five Year Development Plan. Just before the end of this Financial Year, the Parliament had a session which saw the Oversight Parliamentary Committees together with the CAG reports heavily criticising some of the ministries for their insensitiveness in what amounted to mismanagement and corruption.
This again together with aforesaid factors is bad enough to keep us off track of our vision 2025. So this budget session is sitting while very fresh of the memories of the recent April sitting that saw the exit of six senior ministers. But in essence those reports reflected the activities of 2010/11; therefore for the current outgoing year 2011/12, we may hear some similar stories. Take note of the Bahi Parliamentarian who is alleged to have been involved in a corruption case recently obviously enticed to whitewashing some of the financial malpractices in the current financial year (2011/2012).
All that said, mainly it is a question of political accountability that cost some of these ministers and hopefully an element of deterrence has emerged from this scenario. Should we expect a changed working spirit from the government functionaries with
their political principals from this lesson?
Obviously, we will experience a changed parliament, even responses to questions raised in parliament would be well researched before being answered. And we are seeing now our legislatures are moved on national interests not on allegiances to their parties, which is a healthy sign to our Bunge.
In the previous budget session, there were some proposals from the oppositions for austerity measures such as removal of luxury vehicles, decrease the tax evasion, avoid wasteful spending and executives should be given loans and buy personal cars. Also there were some proposals for reduction of too many seminars which amounted to institutional corruption for creating unnecessary expenditure such as preparation of bags, t-shirts and other items that could be avoided. I hope this has been reduced and the money is put into good use.
Let us get the feedback and all the indications are showing that there is a new beginning of getting serious in shaping our country and its leaders towards our march to the wishful middle class economy. God bless!
j n y o k a @ l i v e . c o m
+255754342711 Senior Citizen