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What they say about JK`s cabinet reshuffle

6th May 2012
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President Jakaya Kikwete

President Jakaya Kikwete’s cabinet reshuffle on Friday attempted to quench public thirst for a cabinet fix, which was a fallout from parliamentary debates on the Controller and Auditor General’s report for fiscal year 2010/2011. Kikwete’s reaction to public outcry is one thing, but whether the public has been satisfied with it is something that The Guardian on Sunday sought to find out through random interviews with Dar es Salaam residents.

Dismas Belela (head of security guards at Interchick factory, Mbezi Beach)

“The reshuffle has cleansed the party (CCM) and the government at large.

I am particularly encouraged by how the President has dealt with the Ministry of Minerals. He has realised that this ministry is huge and needs an extra hand. As to the Ministry of Health, he has touched the hearts of many by doing away with the two former ministers …”

Ashley Msigala (Food vendor)

“We have heard about the performance of some of the new ministers, and so we have an idea of what kind of people they are. The President has made a perfect choice for the Ministry of Finance. However, let’s give them time …it’s too early to judge them. Nevertheless, shortcomings are always there, for politicians and businesspeople alike.”

Jackson Shoo (Student at International Medicine and Technological University (IMTU)

“I think the President has done well to remove the ministers he has dropped. He has made the right decision to place Amos Makala at the Ministry of Information, Youth, Culture and Sports. Makala is a sports fan himself. I believe he will not tolerate monkey business in the ministry.”

Musa Ramadhani (Orange seller at Mwenge commuter bus stand)

“Absolutely nothing has been done in the reshuffle. You see, this government is either sold or is rotten. The leaders have no concern for the citizens, especially us vendors, the common people. Just remember how the police handled the relocation of the vendors at the Ubungo bus stand; it was unbelievable how poor people were treated. Unless the government starts respecting the rights of the marginalised and take care of their basic needs, the reshuffle means nothing to us”.

Huessen Ali (Bajaj driver at Mwenge)

“If key implementers of government plans change, definitely the common citizens should have hope for change for the better. If you look closely, you will realise they (the ministers) were in one way or another the source of all these boycotts across the country.”

George Munisi (Mwenge resident)

“The reshuffling can’t fix anything. Instead the whole system needs to be reformed. The whole thing is like one changing a shirt, but this does not mean the body/person has changed. Reforming the system means empowering the citizens more by giving them a voice that should be respected. This is the only way of disciplining ministers by putting the citizens’ interests first.”

Jamali Chipenda (Vehicle mechanic)

“The current system allows ministers to get so big-headed that they can just go ahead and ignore the people’s needs. Yes, the ministers have been changed, but what about the permanent secretaries? These are the key players in the ministries. And we heard the reports that some of them didn’t have good relations with their ministers. There is nothing good you can expect out of this situation.”

Wilison Makundi (Businessman, Sinza Madukan)

“I am satisfied with the cabinet by 40 percent. Some of the new ministers, such as Dr Harrison Mwakyembe (Ministry of Transport) and Dr William Mgimwa (Ministry of Finance) are serious and committed persons who care about the welfare of Tanzanians. However, I am disappointed by the big cabinet which will drain the nation’s resources. There is no need for a big cabinet when many people are very poor. We can avoid that kind of misuse of resources by having a small cabinet of serious people.”

Othman Borre (Barber, Sinza Kijiweni)

“Nothing has been done; there will not be any changes for the better since these are the same faces from the same house, with the same outlook of things. So, I am not satisfied with the cabinet.”

Catherine Shayo (Businesswoman, Mwenge)

“I am not impressed. Whether a person is good or bad is a personal characteristic. On their appointment to public office many people appear good, but later on they change, forget the people and start pursuing selfish interests using their government positions.”

Dickson Chikomo (Resident, Sinza Kijiweni,)

“The cabinet is good. But let’s give it time because we can not judge by looking in their (ministers’) faces.”

Ashura Hamis (Food vendor)

“The six dropped ministers are from the ruling party and the new ones are from the same party. Therefore, I don’t see much hope since nothing was done to contain the poor living condition of Tanzanians. The most important thing at present is to write a new constitution which will guide everything – the answer to our prevailing problems and not the cabinet.”

Kinyua Mohamed (Businessman, Mwenge)

“I am not satisfied with the cabinet simply because nothing has changed. What has changed is the cover but the bottle remains as it is.”

Michael Renatus (Public Service worker, Magomeni)

“I am utterly dissatisfied with the cabinet because it reflects favouritism. There are still some long serving ministers in the cabinet, even before former President Mkapa, and the current President Kikwete. Does it mean that Tanzania has got no other qualified people for the positions? We need changes and not favours.”

Katiba Khatibu (Taxi driver, Magomeni)

“The President made a good selection. With the new changes, we can hope for relief in our everyday life. The President’s changes will help create a sense of commitment at the workplace that will be accompanied by respect for public property.”

Makata Akida (Taxi driver, Magomeni)

“I am satisfied because the President removed all the ministers who reportedly misused public resources; this will bring a good start and new hope for Tanzanians. The president is positively responding to the people’s needs. I advise the President to take action against all the tainted minters so as to serve as a lesson for others with similar habits.

SOURCE: GUARDIAN ON SUNDAY
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