19 April 2011 Guardian Editorial The report that the government stands to lose billions of shillings in taxpayers' money following the purchases of cheap power tillers lends credence to the adage: "cheap is expensive". According to a the report by the Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture, Livestock and Water, some officials in several local government authorities pressed orders for power tillers whose major appeal was their low price! It shows that these authorities were not conversant with of kind of power tillers suitable for the Africa terrains, soil and climate. It is no wonder, then, the authorities went ahead to order a type suited to Pakistan. We are talking of Tanzania's scarce foreign reserve going to waste due to some officials' incompetence. It is clear here that some of our senior men and women in government have little regard for professionalism, which explains why, when it comes to the economy, we hobble while others run. Our concern is that the case of power tillers is merely the tip of an iceberg in matters of public procurement. While people will tend to be careful if they are involved in personal purchases, they care very little where it entails public expenditure. Public officials must remember that the position one occupies is a trust they should not take lightly. For its part, the government must insist on accountability by its officials. Heads must roll where there are proven cases of neglect that leads to huge losses of public funds.