TANZANIANS should emulate good things and keep the legacy of the late former President Benjamin Mkapa, President Samia Suluhu Hassan said yesterday.
She made the call when addressing a symposium to commemorate Mkapa’s one-year death anniversary, which reflected on the late leader’s life and legacy.
The event which also marked the 15th anniversary of Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF) was held in Dar es Salaam at Mlimani City Hall.
“Great men never die, and it is up to us to keep them immortal by continuing the work they have commenced,” Ms Samia stated as she quoted former Indian leader Mahatma Gandhi.
President Samia reaffirmed the government’s commitment to fondly maintain and develop socio-economic initiatives which the late President Mkapa introduced during and after his presidency.
She said the government has a system of sustaining good things initiated by previous leaders alongside introducing new others. President Samia highlighted a number of socio-economic initiatives that the late Mkapa introduced during his tenure and after he retired. “President Mkapa was a person of great vision, brave, strong, development lover, defender of underserved people,” she affirmed, noting that it was not easy to tell the history of Tanzania without speaking of Mkapa.
She commended the decision to organise such an event, considering the great impact that Mkapa made during his life. Highlighting some, President Samia said during his presidency Mzee Mkapa championed for great economic reforms and attracted more investors.
When he took over the presidency, Mkapa managed to lift annual national revenues to 2tri/- from only 331bn/- recorded before he ascended into power in 1995. By using his high level of diplomacy, Mkapa was able to trim down the national debt which was 143.7 per cent of total national income to 90.7 per cent of the national income.
“This increased trust among funders and they continued to give us loans,” President Samia stated. Ms Samia went on saying there were number of institutions Mzee Mkapa introduced with the aim of transforming the country’s socio-economic status, including the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA), Prevention and Combating Corruption Bureau (PCCB), Tanzania Social Action Fund (TASAF), the Tanzania National Roads Agency (TANROADS), National Social Security Fund (NSSF) and many more. President Samia said that even after his retirement, Mkapa continued to serve within and outside borders, citing the Benjamin Mkapa Foundation as a living proof of his efforts after retirement.
The event was organised by the Benjamin Mkapa Foundation (BMF), one of Mkapa’s initiatives to continue with his passion of uplifting the lives of underprivileged Tanzanians through health and economic programmes. Several high profile figures attended the event, including former presidents, Jakaya Kikwete, Ali Hassan Mwinyi, Amani Abeid Karume (Zanzibar) and heads of security organs.
A host of former world leaders joined the event virtually, including former US President Bill Clinton, former Nigeria President Olusegun Obasanjo and former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Tony Blair. During the event, President Samia launched BMF Endowment Fund to raise 43bn/- that will be channelled towards financing the Five-Year Development Plan (2022/26).
Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation, Dr Adelin Kimambo said through the endowment fund, they will also award annual scholarships to clinical officers to help address shortage of health professionals, and support health centres with medical facilities. She said during the past 15 years, the foundation has brought significant impact on the health sector, including supporting health workers in remote areas. Chief Executive Officer of the foundation, Dr Ellen Senkoro, noted that the foundation decided to organise the event annually in honour of Mkapa’s legacy.
Commemorations will be held annually during which different people will give their testimonies and speech to reflect on Mkapa’s life and legacy,” Dr Senkoro said. This year’s commemoration had the theme “President Benjamin Mkapa: A Year After, Celebrating His Life, Living His Legacy”.
The high-level panel discussion was held during the symposium, and focused on enhancing and building sustainable and resilient health systems in the context of multisectoral approaches, policies, innovations, replicability, sustainability, and mutual strategic partnerships between Governments, Development Partners, Private sector, Civil Society Organisations, and Communities, which are central in tackling communicable diseases, non-communicable diseases, and emerging diseases.
Source link : https://allafrica.com/stories/202107150669.html
Author : Daily News
Publish date : 2021-07-15 11:45:22