TZ among countries to benefit from 275bn/- US philanthropic support

TANZANIA: UNITED States under the US Agency for International Development (USAID) has announced a new commitment to support Tanzania government’s reform efforts and facilitate improvements to public services.

Tanzania is among the countries that will benefit from over 110 million US dollars (about 275.5bn/-) in commitment made by US philanthropic and private sector partners under Democracy Delivers Initiative with the broader goal of stimulating democratic openings.

According to a statement released by US Embassy in Dar es Salaam on Thursday, the commitment was made during the USAID ‘Democracy Delivers’ event on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA78) by the Secretary of State Mr Antony Blinken and USAID Administrator Ms Samantha Power.

Ms Samantha in partnership with the Ford Foundation and the Rockefeller Foundation, convened philanthropic and private sector partners to invest in Tanzania and other countries experiencing democratic openings.

“The bond between the American and Tanzanian people that has remained strong for over 60 years is based on shared values and shared aspirations… We want the same thing, a Tanzania that is peaceful and prosperous and where all citizens can realise their full potential and exercise their basic freedoms,” USAID/Tanzania Mission Director Craig Hart said.

“We applaud Tanzania and its leaders for undertaking important democratic reforms that have given greater voice to citizens, expanded civic space and media freedom and re-engaged with the international community. These reforms are already improving Tanzanians’ lives,” he added

However, the statement noted that USAID is working with the US Congress to provide up to 5 million US dollars to support the government of Tanzania’s Ministry of Finance efforts to develop, implement and sustain a digital-based, Public Procurement System focused on the development of a digital procurement portal.

“This portal will increase procurement transparency and efficiency while reducing opportunities for graft and corruption,” read part of the statement.

During the event, major US foundations and companies also announced investments to strengthen health systems, improve access to solar energy and support early childhood development and youths empowerment in Tanzania.

Hilton Foundation is the US foundation that will invest approximately 8 million US dollars to strengthen primary health systems, early childhood development and youths empowerment programmes in the country.

Tanzania is one of four countries receiving 20 million US dollars from The Ford Foundation to support the expansion of democracy that includes funding for Ford’s long-standing work to strengthen the pillars of democracy, increase civic participation and expand democratic values by fostering engagement between the government and people of Tanzania.

Moreover, the statement said that the Skoll Foundation is investing 16.9 million US dollars to strengthen health systems and to deepen partnerships between communities and Ministries of Health in Tanzania and three other countries.

As part of an approximately 11.2 million US dollar grant to advance access to justice, community philanthropy and climate change solutions in Democracy Delivers countries, the Mott Foundation will demonstrate a scalable model to address climate change by improving access to solar energy within selected agricultural value chains in last-mile communities in Tanzania.

Tanzania is one of six countries that will be supported by a 1.5 million US dollar commitment from the WINGS Foundation to elevate the philanthropic sector as a key partner with governments and civil society actors on localised development initiatives in supporting the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and efforts to protect and promote democracy.

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