District Commissioner for Ileje District, in Tanzania, Rosemary Staki Senyamule has said Ileje and Chitipa Districts can easily attain socioeconomic growth if the two districts engage in joint planning and implementation of development programmes which intend to address similar challenges impinging on the people of the two sides.
She made the remarks Wednesday during New Year’s cerebrations held at Chitipa Secondary School Hall at Chitipa Boma.
Senyamule said the need to execute development projects jointly cannot be over emphasized because she observed that multiple challenges that frustrate socioeconomic growth of Ileje and Chitipa Districts are the same.
Ileje District, situated to the South East of Tanzania, is separated from Chitipa District by Songwe River, which also serves as an international boundary between Tanzania and Malawi.
Similar cultures and traditions, intermarriages and illegal and legal cross border trade are some of key issues that bond people of the two districts.
Absence of viable and sustainable markets and poor road network to link the two districts to economically established districts and towns are to a larger extent blamed for underdevelopment in the two districts.
Senyamule then coaxed planers in infrastructure development projects from the two districts to go to the drawing board to plan for the construction of Mpemba-Isongole (Ileje side) and Mbirima -Chitipa Road, to link the two districts to Tanzara Railway Line and a high way to towns of Mbeya in Tanzania and Lusaka in Zambia and beyond.
“Once this road is constructed, Ileje and Chitipa Districts will open up and this will help to boost the economic growth of the two border and isolated districts,” said the focused lady DC.
She said the road project can easily be financed by World Bank, IMF and other donors affiliated to the development of African countries, through the Regional Window.
Said Senyamule, “Resources from Regional Window are used to support projects jointly implemented by two countries as long as it is evident the projects intend to serve the interests of people of the two countries.”
Her counterpart, Chitipa District Commissioner, Grace Zione Chirwa hailed the cordial relationship flourishing between the two districts which she said has to be promoted for the continued benefit of people of the two sides.
Chirwa said people of the two districts are one, going by their cultures and traditions and other aspects of life adding that no element have the potential to put them apart.
“Let me urge the people of the two districts to continue living together as people from one family. Let us not be betrayed by international boundary imposed to us by colonial maters for their administrative and political purposes,” said Chirwa.
Chirwa was, however, non committal to suggestions by Senyamule to engage technocrats of the two districts to start planning for the construction of the road which runs from Mpemba to Chitipa because the council hands are tied up on the matter.
She said decisions and plans to implement high class infrastructure projects rests in the hands of National Road Authority (NRA) which takes orders from central government.
Earlier, Malawi Presidential Advisor on youth affairs, Nick Aladini Masebo asked people of the two districts to take advantage of their cordial relationship to promote develop in their respective areas.
Masebo, a former MP for Chitipa North Constituency, situated right at the boundary with Tanzania, observed that much as people of the two districts are committed to work and business, most of the areas are seriously underdeveloped.-ManaFollow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :