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Why Kikwete should not be asked to resign....

Discussion in 'Great Thinkers' started by Susuviri, Jul 25, 2011.

  1. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    With the electricity crisis ever worsening and the budget of the Ministry of Energy and Minerals having been withdrawn amid allegations of attempted corruption of MPs, more and more people are saying that JK should resign. He shouldn’t be asked to resign.

    In a radio interview recently with BBC Swahili, JK stated that his administration is not to blame for the crisis. The primary culprit is the shortfall in rains that has, for all intents and purposes, shut down hydroelectric power generation. He stated that he was not God; neither him nor his government could turn into a cloud and rain over Mtera. He further added that by December 2011 more than 300 MW of generation capacity will have been added to the grid by his administration, more than any other administration has ever done.

    Based on reactions, these arguments have failed to placate the public. Not much of a surprise, since most of his arguments were BS and no real solution had been proposed. No-one, except maybe he himself once in a while, has ever thought of JK as God, and had expected miracles from him. However, many had hoped he would think strategically and act proactively. Unfortunately, here we are, in the 21[SUP]st[/SUP] century, and the only thing our president can do is shrug his shoulders, smile vacantly and tell us he wishes he were God.

    A very surprising attitude since in 2006 he had been all gang-ho about resolving the electricity crisis then; enthusiasm that had culminated in Richmond and Dowans. Mired by corruption, the capacity installed then is not running now, further exacerbating the current crisis. Recently, Symbion bought Dowans and is said to start generating some 100 MW in August, presumably constituting ⅓ of the 300 MW electricity generation capacity “added to the grid by JK”. Then, sometime ago about 100 MW capacity generators had been ordered from Siemens by Tanesco (as JK put it: “you don’t just buy such generators of the shelf like mitumba, you have to order them many months in advance”) which are currently being delivered and installed in stages; and should be running at full capacity by December, thus another ⅓ of the capacity added by JK. Furthermore, there is some coal fired generators currently being installed in southern Tanzania by foreign investors, to be largely used to feed the electricity needs of the mining operations of said investors; presumably making up the final ⅓ of the 300 MW capacity added to the grid by JK.

    With regard to the 300 MW added to the grid by JK, only 100 MW is the capacity actually invested by Tanesco, hence by government. The remainder is capacity installed by private investors, so when JK says he added capacity to the grid it should be understood to mean that he mostly allowed private parties to participate in the electricity generation business. Unless he has personal stake in these private enterprises, in which case his statement is to be understood to mean that 100 MW was added by his administration and 200 MW by him as a “businessman in office”.

    Sadly, this whole argument about not being God and drought being to blame is so ludicrous that JK himself gets confused, because one minute he argues that the lack of rain is to blame then he turns around and states that natural gas and coal is starting to be utilized. Now, either we wait for rain or we have alternatives and we use them. Neither that climate change was bound to cause serious vagaries in weather patterns nor that Tanzania has natural gas and coal reserves aplenty is news. The only news here is that JK and crew had failed to think ahead and act in due time.

    The obvious solution to faltering rains would, of course, have been to capture more of it; that is to build dams. As well as to make better use of the natural water reservoirs that the country has (i.e. all the rivers and lakes we have). But, of course, constructing dams and hydroelectric power stations takes several years, thus falls in the realm of strategic thinking well outside the capacity of JK and crew. Just to make matters clear, the most conservative estimate of Tanzania’s hydroelectric generation potential is 5 GW. 10 times as much as utilized when Mtera and other hydro-power plants run at full capacity.

    Regardless, the recent purchase of generators by Tanesco, and thus by government, constitutes the largest public investment made in electricity generation in a long time. So, when JK says he has done more (or rather will have done more when these machines are installed and running) than his predecessors, he is factually right. However, he conveniently forgets to mention that his administration has had at its disposal more financial resources than any of his predecessors.

    At the end of the Mwinyi administration Tanzania had essentially been bankrupt. It had taken at least the first term of the Mkapa administration to get the economy and public finances back on track. World Bank and IMF imposed austerity measures had prescribed, among others, privatization, the imposition of higher taxes and the opening up of the economy to foreign investors; earning President Mkapa the derogatory label “ukapa”. During the second term of the Mkapa administration, the economy had picked up, had started to grow and the country had acquired a reputation for being solidly committed to private enterprise and democracy; a key requisite when dealing with foreign lenders, donors and investors.

    Thus, JK had come to power with 4 key factors in his favor:
    1. A soundly growing economy, meaning solid and continuously growing domestic income
    2. Donor goodwill aplenty, meaning aid and grants in abundance
    3. Foreign investors queuing to invest, meaning plenty of capital and know how to tap
    4. The ability to once again borrow; especially starting mid-2006 when Tanzania had been granted, after several years of negotiations, billions of dollars in foreign debt relief.
    Indeed, the Kikwete administration could and did spend more than any of its predecessors. In the 5 years period from fiscal year 2006/07 to FY 2010/11, government budgeted total development expenditure and net lending increased by an average of 22.8% per year; to reach TZS 3,819 billion in 2010/11, 2.76 times higher than it had been in 2005/06, the last budget passed under Mkapa; mostly financed through aid and debt.

    In the 5 years between FY 2006/07 and FY 2010/11, the JK administration had been allocated some USD 10,000 million in development and net lending expenditures. Given that the capital cost of installing electricity generation capacity is between 1 and 2 million U.S. Dollars per MW; just 10% of the resources allocated to development over the last 5 years would have allowed for installing 500 to 1,000 MW in electricity production capacity. Furthermore USD 1,000 million invested thus would have amounted only to 3.4% of the overall USD 29,501 million spent by government during the last 5 years. 3.4% of government overall expenditure to double Tanesco’s electricity generation capacity and thereby avoid 12-18 hours per day blackouts and the collapse of the economy!

    Interestingly enough in 2009 the administration had found the resources to finance a USD 1,300 million so-called “stimulus package” said to have been aimed at the agriculture, tourism, mining exploration, manufacturing and gemstone trade sectors.

    I started by stating that JK should not be asked to resign then made an analysis of his and his administration’s mistakes and failures, making the case for his removal. However, I still maintain he should not be asked to resign. He should be fired! I understand that forcing him to resign would amount to the same thing. But I do not see any reason for euphemisms, political niceties and allowing him to “save face”. He messed up big time, so fire him! Drastic problems require drastic measures as the saying goes. Let every current and future politician and senior civil servant learn once and for all: mess up and you will be kicked out in disgrace. I am waiting to see how we Tanzanians will deal with this gross incompetence in high office.
     
  2. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Another 'shady' figure is that the additional 300 MW does not take into account that the previously installed 600 MW including the hydroelectric dams are working below capacity and in dire need of overhaul.

    This means that the actual shortfall of electricity is not the additional 300 MW but more like 600MW or more. I am sure that energy experts would be able to give us a run down of the actual shortfall that causes such dire power rationing.
     
  3. Rev. Kishoka

    Rev. Kishoka JF-Expert Member

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    My Dear Comrade Susuviri,

    Bottom line is collective responsibility. Even though fingures are being pointed to Kikwete, it is amazing how people within CCM or opposition have taken a back seat back bench approach to fire missiles at Ngeleja and Serikali and not come up with a legislative solution!

    Kwani wao si watunga Sheria? If Kikwete is being pu ssy footed to call state of emergency, why are our Wabunge turning deaf, blind and dumb on this?

    If there is anyone who is even remotely thinking of winning 2015, this is a golden opportunity to push for an energy sector reform and put down a comprehensive plan to fix this problem. I wish there was some bipartisan dealings like Mnyika and January working together with private sector like CIT and other wadau.

    Sometime someone has to just work and stop waiting for Bwana Mkubwa to act! He has nothing to loose, so let him now go to Argentina and taste the wine there and see if the texture and fermentation is better than the one he tasted in Robben Island last week!
     
  4. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Mchungaji!
    I agree that collective responsibility is important but the buck does stop with JK. However asking him to resign is giving him a break. What my argument is that the public of Tanzania should show their displeasure and disapproval and force him out of power because he has failed to lead this country. However it is important to understand that it is not because we don't have electricity now but because as I have tried to point out, for the past 6 years, he and his government has failed to come up with a strategic plan and vision to address the power issue despite having a huge budget at their disposal which by the way they have squandered! Unacceptable!
    We need to look beyond the picture frame of power rationing... we are faced by indisputable facts that JK and his government has failed us and there is no respite in sight.

     
  5. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

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    Susuviri,

    Unles you want to exercise your philosophizing and lofty ivory tower soliloquies, the very premise of your piece is as realistic as a snowball's chance in hell, or better yet, a Higg's Boson's chance of being discovered this year in some Ludewa "shule ya kata".

    So again, unless you are practising mental acrobatics, save your energy for something worthwhile.

    Kikwete does not posses neither the sense of honor nor responsibility to even entertain resigning. So rest assured.

    As for being fired, that seems to be an even bigger improbability, and you know it.
     
  6. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Mkuu Kiranga,
    I am exercising my democratic right and also appealing to the thinking minority including you hoping to spur you into action. BTW I do not expect JK to DO anything but just in case he does offer his resignation it should be only after we fired him.
    All in all I do sense that you have turned very cynical and in fact you have lost any hope of making any valuable change in this country, why is that?

     
  7. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

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    I am a mere realist. We need a critical mass of at least semi-literate people who are irked enough by this nausea to act.

    Right now people are so caught up in "majaliwa ya mungu" you can hardly start anything meaningful.

    Hao CHADEMA wenyewe walioonekana ndio best hope washalewa mvinyo wa "chama mbadala".
     
  8. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Mkuu I share your frustration, however I think that there is a considerable number of people like you and me who see clearly what needs to be done ... remember that Egypt is not that much better educated but it took a handful of activists like Ghonim to bring about change. We should stop looking to political parties for action and find the activists in ourselves.

    With regard to Chadema, I absolutely agree that they have disappointed but they are still the best possible alternative. However I admire the activists of Egypt who made sure that change is done on their terms not politicians.

    Back to topic above, if more people would understand how much money has been squandered and stolen in the past 6 years in the energy sector alone, I am sure that we could spur them into action. Maybe I need to translate this into Kiswahili?

     
  9. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

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    You cannot compare the literacy level, urbanization level, history and spirit of embracing change in Egypt with Tanzania.

    The Egyptians have 3% arable land, on the Nile basin, but yet I see Egyptian mango juice exported to Europe and the USA. Tanzania?

    Can you compare the percentage of Egyptian with access to the internet / newspaper readership with that of Tanzania?

    If you don't have this critical mass, where will our Ghonims work? You are going to end up with a "preaching to the choir" situation here on JF, same hoopla, same preachers, sam choir, while people in Muleba hardly know what's going on.

    This is why I am insisting on a critical mass first, because even if you remove JK today, if you do not have a public that knows how to hold so called leader accountable, pretty soon the replacement will feel there is no reason not to plunder all over again.

    I would rather see a deep rooted change than a cosmetic change fom one strongman to another.
     
  10. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    I agree with you about a number of things but I still think that Egypt has more in common with Tanzania than Europe etc and people may relate more easily about the 'Yes We Can' bit.

    But back to topic so do you suggest that we do nothing and wait for deep rooted change to happen slowly and eventually? I think we have proven as a nation to be too patient and waiting for miracles to happen.

    I believe any change is good at this point... but how can we assume that the opposition will do a similarly bad job if we do not give them a chance to prove us wrong?

     
  11. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

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    Far from my meaning.

    My meaning is, instead of trying to blow everything in a sudden regime change move, which will remain a Selassian illussion to be pursued but never attained, I would rather see people establishing grassroot presence and working from the bottom up. While the latter may not promise changes tomorrow, the resulting changes would be more meaningful, and moreover, they also do not need to take a decade.

    Ndiyo maana nikisikia miito ya Kikwete kujiuzulu nakumbuka kauli za nchi "kulaani ubaguzi wa rangi" bila kufanya chochote.

    It is certainly meaningful in that you are making your position known, but action wise, it is hardly actionable.
     
  12. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    With a system that had the luxury to entrench itself in the country physically and mentally like CCM has been able to do in Tanzania for 50 years, I do not believe that gradual change is possible as every effort will be sabotaged. I think that it is only when we actually make sudden change that we will be spurred into action. Even if we mess up at the beginning anything is better than the current status quo which is spiraling the nation out of control!


     
  13. Kiranga

    Kiranga JF-Expert Member

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    The problem with sudden change, which inevitably involve fewer people, is that it requires benevolent leaders, a rarity we cannot take for granted.

    If you go on one extreme of that sudden change, you are talking about a military revolution - I am in no way advocating that, merely using extremes to drive home my point -. A military revolution is hardly a good way to institute democracy, if it was Nigeria would have been more democratic than the U.SA. My point is, the fewer people you have involved in a regime change, the more you create an oligarchy, not a democracy.

    When Nyerere wanted to topple the British, he did not concentrate on having the support of only the Sykes of the then Tanganyika. He resigned his work as a teacher at Pugu and circled the country to gather grassroot support and legitimacy against the British, entrenching the tentacles of TANU almost everywhere across Tanganyika. At the same time working with the Twinings and Sykes took it's proportionate importance. Balance.

    What make you think that a few people at the heart of a sudden change will live up to the lofty ideals of democracy?

    Castro started as a revolutionary and ended up a big failure, Chiluba slashed the giant Kaunda, only to have Zambians wish they had never voted him - Kaunda - out.

    At least when you have a grassroot based revolution, you hold the powers that be in check. The military in Egypt is forced to act according to the dictates of Tahrir Square, to an extent at least. It - the military- just had a cabinet reshuffle based on another wave of Tahrir square demonstrations. Gimmicky, but at least you get a sense of who is calling the shots, to an extent .

    In an open society, we need to entrench democratic convictions in the general public before a few people can impose their version of these values on that public, for all we know, Tanzanians ( even with ample education) may reject a regime change and choose to reform the existing regime from within.

    You have some sincere Tanzanians right now who are genuinely convinced that CCM is still Tanzania's best shot, despite all the corruption and nauseating debauchery. That in principle - if CCM could ever live up to it's core principles and legacy- it is the most mature and capable vessel for advancing the Tanzanian people.
     
  14. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Under normal circumstances I would agree with you, Mkuu, however I am looking at the situation. I posted months ago another of my view called "The Fierce Urgency of Now" http://www.jamiiforums.com/jukwaa-la-siasa/113777-the-fierce-urgency-of-now-tunahitaji-vitendo-sasa-hivi-na-si-kusubiri-mpaka-2015-a.html and this is becoming more and more imminent.

    The problem is that while we - the elite and educated - carry on lofty debates online, the millions of Tanzanians are hurting more and more everyday. The result will be that they will turn to any next person who will promise them that change and it may come in the form of religion extremism, racist nationalism, or any other extreme form. And mind you, this is bound to happen sooner than later. Isn't it better to have a controlled change however sudden but with rational leaders and still stay within the legal bounds rather than allow things to spiral out of control and give rise to irrational and extreme voices.

    One evidence of this restlessness and chaos is yesterday's clash of 'daladala' or 'viford' drivers, conductors and touts with the police. We are in a simmering pot and the lid cannot contain the boil for long, something's gonna give.

    If we can take this discussion to a more reasonable and rational discussion instead of the usual 'Down with him" slogans then we can achieve more especially if we can provide solid fact and figures and present a strong argument as to why this president and government has failed and why it is important to tell him to step aside. This should be considered a national matter not only a political party or partisanship matter. The question is who is going to do this? Who will step up to the plate? I wonder where are the powers that be? Do they not see this imminent danger?

    This country needs leadership urgently and not gradual spread of democracy...
     
  15. Rev. Kishoka

    Rev. Kishoka JF-Expert Member

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    My curiosity is why there has never been a revolution within CCM itself? You have Sitta and crew on one corner, you have Lowassa in the other, you have Mwandosya, Billali in another corner and you have a lone ranger Kikwete on the corner, a sitting duck!

    Where is the fire power that brougt Jumbe down to his knees? Are people ndani ya CCM waoga or just p ussywhooped and hypnotized that mambo ni yaleyale?

    And sad enough, the opposition is following the same footsteps even though the path is full of thorns and vipers!
     
  16. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    My friend Mchungaji,

    I think that without consciously recognizing, CCM has become a group of hypocrites united by self interest. That is the reason why they are pu ssy footing around each other and nobody is bold enough to stand up and do the right thing. None! Not Sitta, not Mwakyembe, not Lowassa, not Kikwete!

    What baffles me is the flip floping of the opposition! They should have the moral authority but it seems they don't. They have honestly disappointed many Tanzanians as Kiranga has expressed very deftly above.


     
  17. Rev. Kishoka

    Rev. Kishoka JF-Expert Member

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    Susuviri,

    I thought of this thread when I was reading Adam Malima's response that Serikali will tafiti athari za kukosekana umeme! It shows you that our leadership is sound asleep...no in deep coma that we have a DNR sign next to it!

    Almost 6 years down the road, we are now taking an innitiative to figure out through economist and planning commission the impact of power rationing? kweli? at this time and the modern age we live in we are now trying to figure out?

    It is scary how complacent Serikali ya Tanzania has become!
     
  18. Mag3

    Mag3 JF Gold Member

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    What you guys are forgetting is that CCM does not plan to peacefully relinquish power any time soon and as such has no qualms in doing whatever it takes to maintain the status quo. When the stakes go high and painful choices have to be made, most of what is perceived from outside as factions within CCM can turn out to be nothing but part of a well orchestrated plan. The best example of this was seen last year when in spite of being a complete failure and showing lack of leadership in his first term, they put aside their differences to give Kikwete a second term.

    Truth is, over the years CCM has evolved into a monster of unimaginable proportions and developed an instinct for survival that is unparalleled historically at whatever cost to innocent Tanzanians. They will stop at nothing to ensure their survival even if it means concocting sacrificial lambs because to them Tanzania without CCM is nothing but an armageddon. Fellow citizens of the Republic of Tanzania, very sadly there is no fast track out of this quagmire save for action for the society is so indoctrinated by CCM propaganda that there is no room for mere words.

    CCM has managed to bring the Tanzanian public to its knees and now most have succumbed and accepted their impotence of action as something inevitable and so let CCM control their lives. To wait for these people to wake up out of their slumber before taking action will not work and will only embolden and give comfort to those that hold the reigns of power. With the kind of system that we have, change cannot be easy and will not come peacefully as some may wish but through mass action led by courageous, selfless, and daring individuals and the time is NOW.

    The bottom line is - the greatest enemy our country is facing right now is CCM, period.
     
  19. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    MKuu Mag3, I believe that your analysis is right on point and you have eloquently explained the core problem of our society! However the challenge we face is finding those daring, selfless, courageous individuals to lead us. Because of this mass mentality that CCM rule is inevitable, many politicians including the opposition, is reluctant to do anything significant. When there were signs of some movement (remember Arusha etc), it was eventually simmered or watered down by the same leaders. This means that the opposition is not ready for change, and I ask why? Is it because by getting cushy jobs as MPs they have now become part of the status quo?
    Whatever the case we have to stop looking to politicians to make these changes and bring it about ourselves.

     
  20. Susuviri

    Susuviri JF-Expert Member

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    Mag 3, Rev Kishoka and Kiranga wakuu, I just wanted to tell you that despite the seeming naivety of this article I do see the situation clearly:
    Expecting JK to "heed the call of the people and resign" is clearly naïve. And, forcing him out of office before the next election is impossible; almost. I believe that according to our constitution, parliament can impeach and thereby force the president to resign. However, beyond all the technicalities and complexities, getting such a motion passed through parliament requires a ⅔ majority. Given that the ruling party holds by far the largest number of seats, without most CCM parliamentarians getting behind it, impeachment would never pass. Remember, parliamentarians of a party whose chairman is JK, the person to be ousted and the person who could get said parliamentarians, most easily, expelled from the party and thereby from parliament.

    Even the numbers are against it. For JK to defeat a motion of impeachment would require 120 "nay" votes. Of these, he can directly influence the votes of the 10 members he appoints to parliament, the Attorney General's vote whom he appointed, plus the votes of the 50 parliamentarians he has appointed as ministers and deputy ministers (whom he can replace in his cabinet at will). Given that he has plenty of favors to bestow (e.g. relative of "friendly" parliamentarian appointed regional or district commissioner, ambassador, head of some lucrative government agency, etc.) getting an additional 59 votes should be a walk in the park.

    So, what remains then is to brace in for the long haul and hope that 2015 will bring change for the better. Four more years of mismanagement, incompetence and corruption, while the country sinks deeper and deeper into trouble.

    Kama wakuu you have better ideas let me hear but for now I find some relief in ranting online ...
     
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