Dismiss Notice
You are browsing this site as a guest. It takes 2 minutes to CREATE AN ACCOUNT and less than 1 minute to LOGIN

Demolition of old buildings in Dar: Power syndicate blamed

Discussion in 'Jukwaa la Siasa' started by BAK, Dec 19, 2008.

  1. BAK

    BAK JF-Expert Member

    #1
    Dec 19, 2008
    Joined: Feb 11, 2007
    Messages: 50,071
    Likes Received: 9,778
    Trophy Points: 280
    Demolition of old buildings in Dar: Power syndicate blamed

    THISDAY REPORTER
    Dar es Salaam

    A POWERFUL syndicate of politicians, senior government officials and private businessmen is reported to be behind an ongoing demolition spree that has seen dozens of historical buildings bulldozed in Dar es Salaam.

    And it has also been learned that a group working for the preservation of the city’s history has already petitioned the government to intervene and halt the demolition squads.

    Members of a city-based business community say they have written to the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements, urging the minister to order authorities to stop approving any more applications for demolition of old buildings and re-development of the city’s central business district.

    The group defending the city’s ancient buildings asked not to be named by THISDAY, fearing reprisals from the forces behind the demolition spree.

    ’’We are dealing with a syndicate of powerful politicians and businessmen,’’ says part of the letter.

    And it adds: ’’We also strongly believe that instead of demolishing the existing buildings that are durable for another 30 to 60 years, it will be more cost effective to acquire land at presently moderate market value along both sides (one kilometre wide) of Mandela Expressway for new commercial developments, including high-rise buildings.’’

    The letter is understood to be a response to revelations by THISDAY yesterday that many of the city’s ancient buildings with historical and architectural significance are in line for demolition to pave way for the construction of modern skyscrapers.

    According to THISDAY findings, more than 10 such buildings, structures and sites in the city centre protected under national antiquities legislation are now under direct threat from real estate developers.

    Scores of these buildings have already been pulled down to make way for ’modern’ structures, and officials have confirmed that more than a hundred other such buildings, structures and sites in various parts of the country are also earmarked for demolition in the name of development.

    In their letter entitled ’Construction Spree of High Rise Buildings in the City Centre’ and copied to President Kikwete, the members of the business chamber said such plans are in contravention of the Local Government (Urban Authorities) Act No. 8 of 1982, Section 85 (2).

    This legislation prohibits approval of construction of buildings which cause disfigurement of the characters of an urban area or neighbourhood.

    ’’Each high-rise construction that is allowed to be built in every nook and corner of the city centre against the civic interest of the country has adverse impact and becomes irreversible for more than 100 years,’’ the letter adds.

    It continues: ’’We are already straddled with a few sorry examples of such sores which are now irreversible. What will be left will be for posterity and history to ascribe blames.’’

    Reaction in general has been angry over reports of the demolition of the historical buildings being done with the express blessing of the government.

    A city-based architect, Nadir Tharani, said a historical sensibility may insist on preserving such buildings instead of demolishing them.

    ’’A moratorium (on the demolition of historical buildings) should be imposed�the exercise should be reviewed with a wider stakeholder input,’’ asserted Tharani, noting that all over the world old buildings are finding new uses such as hotels or galleries.

    He said old buildings are being preserved in Europe, the United States, Damascus and even China as essential tourist attractions.

    ’’A city is not made up of apartments and offices only. There are other uses which are essential to a vibrant city life,’’ said Tharani.

    ’’Remember, we are talking of a very small area of the city of Dar es Salaam. Those who need to demolish in order to build can go to Tabata, Tandale, Kinondoni and parts of Temeke,’’ he added.

    Another Dar es Salaam resident who asked to remain anonymous because he works closely with the government argued yesterday that no development is worth the demolition of historical buildings because they are priceless.

    He brushed aside a statement once made by the then minister for lands, housing and human settlements, John Magufuli, who blessed the demolition exercise saying it would provide room for more office accommodation in the city’s central business district.

    He noted that one historical building along Samora Avenue was at one time used as office accommodation for the first Angolan president, Augustino Neto.

    Also, the Tanzania Publishing House also situated along Samora Avenue was once a meeting place for people like Neto, the late Samora Machel of Mozambique, and Yoweri Museveni of Uganda, he further pointed out.

    He called for authorities to give such buildings in Dar es Salaam and other historical towns on the Mainland the same status as Zanzibar’s Stone Town.

    The Antiquities Act provides for the preservation and protection of sites and articles of archaeological, historical or natural interest in the country, amongst other things.

    According to the legislation, a building, site or structure is declared a conservation area when it is a valuable national heritage, contains a homogeneous group of monuments, or has valuable national heritage for its historical, architectural, social or cultural value.
     
  2. BAK

    BAK JF-Expert Member

    #2
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Feb 11, 2007
    Messages: 50,071
    Likes Received: 9,778
    Trophy Points: 280
    Cabinet paper drawn up to halt Dar's demolition spree

    THISDAY REPORTER
    Dar es Salaam

    THE Department of Antiquities has reportedly made an official appeal to the government to save the country's historical buildings from further demolition, and subsequently wiping out the unique history of Tanzania.

    Highly placed sources within the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism told THISDAY that the department has prepared a cabinet paper seeking swift action to save the buildings.

    The move taken by the Department of Antiquities has come in the wake of reports that increasing number of such buildings, structures and sites in the city centre of Dar es Salaam, though supposedly protected by national antiquities legislation, are currently under direct threat from real estate developers.

    Investigations by THISDAY have revealed that several such buildings have already been pulled down to make way for modern skyscrapers, while officials have confirmed that more than 100 others in various parts of the country are also earmarked for demolition any time soon.

    One of the more famous buildings already razed down was the MC George building - popularly known as Salamander Building - at plot number 2199/6 at the junction of Samora Avenue and Mkwepu Street in downtown Dar es Salaam.

    The 107-year-old Salamander Building, built way back in 1901, was reduced to debris last month after the plot was reportedly acquired by controversial local businessman Yusuf Manji to be developed into a high-rise building.

    ''Demolition of the Salamander Building amounts to abusing the national antiquities laws which provide for conservation of such buildings,'' a senior government official who preferred anonymity told THISDAY over the weekend.

    ''That building was a bank of the country's history, being the first building to accommodate Tanzania's first police officer's mess and also the first building to house the country's first German pharmaceutical company. But now that history has gone,'' the official added.

    He fumed that with its history stretching over a century, the Salamander Building should not only have been protected from demolition, but even from being defaced.

    The Antiquities Act No. 10 of 1964 and Amendment Act No. 22 of 1979 both provide for the preservation and protection of sites and objects of national, archaeological, historical and cultural interest.

    According to the 1964 law, a building, site or structure is declared a conservation area when it is a valuable national heritage, contains a homogeneous group of monuments, or has valuable national heritage for its historical, architectural, social or cultural value.

    Our sources in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism say the Cabinet paper will be submitted to the Cabinet Secretariat chaired by President Jakaya Kikwete for action.

    The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) said last week that it was ready to assist in preserving some of Dar es Salaam's historical buildings if an official request to this effect is made to the UN agency.

    An official with UNESCO said the government or any other civil society organization could approach the agency to work together on strategies for protecting such buildings that are now an endangered species.

    ''These old buildings are certainly precious, as they constitute testimonies of a part of the history of this country,'' said the official.

    It is understood that UNESCO has a World Heritage Committee which runs a programme listing certain forests, mountains, lakes, deserts, monuments, buildings, complexes, and other such sites (including whole cities) as bearing special status.

    The programme catalogues, names, and conserves sites of outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common heritage of humanity all over the world. Under certain conditions, listed sites can obtain financial aid from the World Heritage Fund administered by the committee.

    THISDAY has learned that a local pressure group working for the preservation of Dar es Salaam's historic sites has already petitioned the government to intervene and halt the continuing demolition of old buildings in and around the city centre, said to have the backing of a powerful syndicate of politicians, senior government officials, and private businessmen.

    The group is understood to have written to the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements, urging the minister to order authorities to stop approving any more applications for demolition of old buildings and re-development of the city's central business district.

    ''We are dealing with a syndicate of powerful politicians and businessmen,'' says part of the letter copied to President Kikwete.

    It advises that instead of demolishing existing old buildings that are durable for another 30-60 years, it would be more ''cost-effective'' to acquire land ''at presently moderate market value'' along the Nelson Mandela Expressway for new commercial developments, ''including high-rise buildings.''

    Members of the group, however, asked THISDAY not to name them, fearing reprisals from the forces believed to be behind the demolition spree.

    Reaction in general has been angry over evidence of historical buildings being demolished at frightening speed all around the city centre.

    A city-based architect, Nadir Tharani, said a moratorium on the issue needs to be imposed and the exercise should be reviewed ''with a wider stakeholder input.''

    ''A city is not made up of apartments and offices only. There are other uses which are essential to a vibrant city life,'' said Tharani.

    Another Dar es Salaam resident, who asked to remain anonymous because he works closely with the government, called on authorities to give ancient buildings in Dar es Salaam and other historical towns on the Mainland the same status as Zanzibar's Stone Town.

    THISDAY sent written questions on the issue to the permanent secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism more than a month ago, but the ministry has remained tight-lipped.
     
  3. Lusajo

    Lusajo JF-Expert Member

    #3
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Feb 25, 2008
    Messages: 451
    Likes Received: 5
    Trophy Points: 35
    Hivi hawa watu wanadhani kuuendeleza mji ni lazima City Centre? kwani tunahitaji mpaka UNESCO ndio waje watueleze umuhimu wa hayo majengo? Parking zenyewe hazitoshi hapo Dar na bado hao wanaojenga wanawaza kupata hela tuu na sidhani kama wataweka parking za kutosha. Hivi tutawaonyesha nini watoto wetu? (Anyways hatuna utamaduni huo) je hao watalii wanaokuja Dar wataona nini? Ilibidi hayo mambo yoote yawekwe sawa na tu-advertise kuhusu hayo majengo. Inabidi watu wapewe masomo jamani nini kinafanyika nchi za watu.
     
  4. P

    PanguPakavu Amy Senior Member

    #4
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Jul 7, 2007
    Messages: 140
    Likes Received: 1
    Trophy Points: 0
    nchi imejaa machizi wengi ile!

    anatakiwa wajue old buildings and old history has more value in the new world than their shallow sky scrappers.

    huchelewi sikia kesho wanakuja na IDEA ya kujenga Brand new IKULU hawa...,hovyooooooooo.

    haven't they heard v antiques/!
     
  5. Haki.tupu

    Haki.tupu JF-Expert Member

    #5
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Apr 25, 2008
    Messages: 254
    Likes Received: 3
    Trophy Points: 35
    Hii habari ya serikali kutokujali majengo ya kihistoria inasikitisha sana! Sijui tutawaachia nini vizazi vijavyo maana hata vitabu hatuandiki! Majengo tunabomoa! Unajua nchi nyingi za ulaya zinapata hela nyingi sana katika utalii wa majengo ya kale! USA imepitwa sana na Europe katika utalii wa aina hii! USA ni nchi changa! Nchi nyingi za ulaya hawafagilii sana maghorofa marefu katika miji yao (miji mingine imekuwepo kwa miaka yapata 1000) kwa sababu ya fahari ya historia! Hivi hawa akina Manji lazima wakajenge Samora avenue tu! Mbona Dar es Salaam kubwa sana! Zaidi ya yote siku hizi watu duniani waongea lugha ya green buildings! Sasa huu ujenzi wa kubomoa majengo ya kihistoria (which are very environmentally friendly) kunatupeleka wapi! Yaani jiji litajaa majumba ya vioo tu ambayo yana-radiate sana na kuharibu micro-climate!

    Ni vigumu sana kuamini kuwa watu jamii ya Manji wanahata chembe ya uchungu na TZ. Kila kukicha wanaharibu tu!
     
  6. Yunic

    Yunic Senior Member

    #6
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Sep 26, 2007
    Messages: 109
    Likes Received: 0
    Trophy Points: 0
    This is really sad. Tanzania hakuna order na hakuna utaratibu hata chembe. hapo City council kumejaa wataalamu feki kibao, eti "Urban-Rural Planners". hawa wataalamu ndio wanatakiwa wawe wanatoa na kuunda mipangilio na mikakati ya upanuzi wa miji yetu, masalani kutunza majengo na kihistoria! Ama kweli nchi yetu jamani inakwisha! Nchi zingine planners wana umuhimu mkubwa mno! Hawa wataalamu wetu wangekuwa wanafanya kazi kwa utaratibu, mambo mengi yangeenda safi, lakini.......? Hivi hata huyu Meya wa jiji la Dar es Salaam anafanya kazi gani? Ofif yake ndiyo inatakiwa atoe miongozo ya jinsi Dar itakavyo endelea na kupanuka, lakini.......? Hovyo kweli kweli!

    Hii ndiyo problem ya political appointments zinazotolewa bila kufuata mizingi ya elimu, wala ujuzi....sana sana ni kama "Asante kwa msaada wako"!! Huu upuuzi ukiisha labda tutaendelea.
     
  7. Kichuguu

    Kichuguu Platinum Member

    #7
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Oct 11, 2006
    Messages: 6,945
    Likes Received: 282
    Trophy Points: 180
    Halafu wanaboa zaidi kuwa hawapanui barabara za city center, na hata hawatengi parking spaces.

    Kitu sina uhakika ni sewage system hapo city center. Najua kuwa zamani kidogo hakukuwa na sewage network hapo city center, je walishejanga sewage cyctem hapo city center? Kama hiyo sewage network haijajengwa bado, ina maana kila ghorofa linalojengwa hapo mjini linachimibiwa cesspit yake?
     
  8. Ether

    Ether Senior Member

    #8
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Mar 16, 2008
    Messages: 137
    Likes Received: 5
    Trophy Points: 0
    pale jiji hakuna urban planner wala architect hata mmoja. it was unbelievable when i went there once and found out about these things. a damn city council board with no architect or urabn planners! jus sad.
     
  9. Steve Dii

    Steve Dii JF-Expert Member

    #9
    Dec 22, 2008
    Joined: Jun 25, 2007
    Messages: 6,414
    Likes Received: 40
    Trophy Points: 145
    Hii Mizee yetu mingi Dar inajifanya inapesa na mianasiasa... na kibaya zaidi, kutokana na hizi influence mbili, inajifanya inajua yote na inaweza kufanya chochote ikifikiriacho bila kujali adha, karaha na tafsiri ya matendo yao kwa vizazi vijavyo. Short-term gains zimewajaa wengi sana... influence zao badala ya kuzitumika positively kwa kuboresha jamii ya sasa na ya mbeleni, wamejawa na ulimbukeni wa kunenepeana na kujilimbikiza mipesa ya haraka haraka kwa kuuza utu wa jamii nzima. Inasikitisha sana.

    Sasa, siye hatuna drainage system, hatuna umeme uliotulia, system za maji safi nazo ni next to zero, mabarabara finyu, parking spaces haba... lakini bado tunang'ang'ania kujenga maghorofa marefu na marefu kwenye central district ambayo ndiyo hiyo hiyo imekuwa kwa miaka 100 iliyopita, badala ya kutanua mji na kuwezesha environs zake, huku tukiacha historical structures intact, tunakimbilia kujibana bana hapohapo padogo tukifikiria kuwa huo ndiyo ujanja. Adha ya kufanya hivyo kwa miaka 40 au 60 ijayo wala hawaifikirii. Ina kera sana.
     
Loading...