ZANZIBAR and China yesterday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the implementation of various development projects in the health, infrastructure and education sectors.
Zanzibar President Dr Mwinyi witnessed the signing of four projects at the State House in the Stone Town on Wednesday, praising China as a ‘committed friend of Zanzibar and Tanzania.
“We, the people of Zanzibar are grateful for the continued strong relations and support from the government of China,” said Dr Mwinyi after the signing of agreements.
The signed projects include the control of Schistosomiasis; and campaigns against tropical diseases, cervical cancer; and strengthening of mother and child treatment.
President Mwinyi said Zanzibar has benefited a lot from China, sharing experience and expertise in various areas including the annual teams of doctors who come into Zanzibar from China to serve people at the Mnazi Mmoja Hospital in Unguja and Abdalla-Mzee Hospital in Pemba.
Dr Mwinyi said the four agreements signed, will not only strengthen the medical services in the country, but further cements good cooperation between the health officials of the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar and China.
“Our relations have significantly helped to improve health infrastructures, medical equipment, medicine, long and short-term training of local health professionals,” he said.
President Mwinyi thanked the Chinese Consul General in Zanzibar, Mr Zhang Zhisheng for the great work of promoting the cooperation between China and Zanzibar.
“The government and people of Zanzibar are deeply grateful for this and look forward to working with the Chinese side to unceasingly deepen cooperation in all fields so as to benefit the people of both sides.
“Our colleagues in China have helped us a lot, we cannot finish listing the benefits Zanzibar has attained for the relations with the great Asian country,” Dr Mwinyi said.
On her side, the Chinese-African People’s Friendship Association (CAPFA) leader Dr Li Bin who signed the agreement praised Tanzania for the historical relations.
She explained that the projects will help control the spread of diseases within the society.
The major focus on the agreement is to strengthen and address the challenge of mother and child mortality.
She further said that Tanzania is blessed to have citizens who are generous, loving and cooperative.
The Zanzibar Minister for Health, Mr Nassor Ahmed Mazrui said the agreements include provision of equipment and other services worth 476,000 US dollars (about 1.2bn/-) and that hospitals set to benefit from the partnership are Mnazi Mmoja, Kivunge, Chakechake and Abdallah Mzee Pemba.
China is one of the first countries to recognize the victory of Zanzibar Revolution and to offer assistance to Zanzibar way back in 1964.
For the past six decades, China has made important contributions to the cause of development and construction in Zanzibar.