Be thankful you are not in Malawi Dr Magufuli, President of Tanzania

I was writing this article in a very nice hotel outside the country when I had been at a conference. My Tanzanian counterparts did not have the trouble of waiting hours at airports, being fed in hotels like battery cage chicken and asked to fill in those conference evaluation forms the conference organisers circulate, asking you whether it had been worth your while to be at the conference.

The no-nonsense  Dr John Pombe Magufuli, President of Tanzania

The no-nonsense Dr John Pombe Magufuli, President of Tanzania

The Taifas did not come to the meeting, although they had been invited, and, I was told, their tickets already purchased. But they voted for Dr John Magufuli who, in thanking them for their vote, grounded most public servants for external and much of domestic travel. What started as a simple one-person one-vote has now turned into something very big.

In case you have not been following what has been up north in Tanzania, I will fill you in now. The term of office for President Jakaya Kikwete had expired. And as is the tradition in Tanzania, they hold elections. Nobody tries to change the constitution such that they stay longer than they are welcome. So, an election they had, and a person called Dr John Magufuli won the election and became the president of Tanzania. No sooner than Magufuli was sworn in than he fired the board of management for Muhimbili Hospital (the Tanzanian version of Kamuzu Central Hospital or QECH).

There was this machine that is called magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine. The story is that the MRI had broken down long ago. Magufuli came on the scene and commanded that the machine be repaired and voila, the machine came into life. It is not scanning people in Dar.

Then there was the independence day celebrations which were coming. Magufuli single handedly proclaimed that there should not be expensive celebrations as is usually the case. Instead of spending on celebrations, the country had to spend on a clean-up campaign. Perhaps he had learned of the good work BEAM was doing in Nyasaland.

And then the Tanzanian parliament was going to open and followed by a State dinner that was going to cost about 300 million Shillings. President Magufuli ordered instead that a modest dinner be done and the rest of the money be taken to buy hospital beds for Muhimbili. In no time Muhimbili got 300 beds and mattresses and 600 bed sheets from that money. I do not know how much else Magufuli is going to do, impressing those that are impressed.

I have heard many a Malawian wishing they had their own Magufuli and Mphungu Village (Capital Hill). I have not asked them whether a Malawian President can declare that money for celebrations be diverted to buy hospital beds and this is done within a few days? Would this be allowable my Malawi laws? Can the government buy things like 300 beds in two days and still be compliant with Public Procurement Act? Yes, there is emergency procurement that one can do but the beds and mattress seems normal to me. President Magufuli, you are lucky you are not in Lilongwe. You can’t do that here kabisa!

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young-s
Guest

our President place him self @ highest price. forgetting that We are very poor ranked 2nd from top

akhunyufe musamatisale
Guest
akhunyufe musamatisale

Maprezident akuno kudziwa kukhutisa zimimba zawo zotupa kalezo basi

Manyera
Guest

Ku Malawi paja Pulezedenti ndi ndani? I wish we had a president so they would emulate what our honourable neighbour is doing up there!

Alex kasamba
Guest

Only me can manage this

Jeremmy Banda
Guest

Malawi needs one like him, let us offer positive criticism. Look at Zambia the president there is equally trying so hard under immense criticism, but the learned must analyse and arise to offer good moves, not to just waffle!!!!!

bodza labwino
Guest

Good for your observation. But no comparison here. If comparisons have to be applied here then ask the writer to lodge in a simpler Rest House in the remote areas of Tanzania not in a hotel, to set us a good example of serving for the poor.

matty
Guest

U better re~investigate abt maguful,we have never seen a brave and strong President as this,what he is doing must be globally acknowledged…! He is the best to me

ndaninso
Guest

What is this article saying? Please educate me.

cristy
Guest
Horrible article. President Magufuli is not the only president taking on this approach. It is something being done in Namibia and South Africa. It absolutely makes sense for developing countries to stop spending money they don’t have and get their act together. Apologies to you, cause if President Magafuli was in Malawi, he will most definitely have been able to do so. Developing countries really have to face the fact that they simply don’t have time nor the money to spend a lot on short term programs and events with so many being sick, hungry and sick. You write confidently… Read more »
Stinking Idiot
Guest

Ooooooh you missed the point, man. Werenganso may be you were in a hurry. Kkkkkkkkk

Frederick
Guest

You should be doing it! Why can’t he do that in Malawi? What is wrong with what he’s doing – sounds like he is doing his job serving the public and not himself.

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