The Mwalimu Nyerere Professorial Chair is said to have sustained a rare level of vitality, success and relevance in promoting research on the challenges and prospects of sustainable socio-economic and political development in Tanzania and Africa.
The remarks were made in Dar es Salaam yesterday by University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) Vice Chancellor Prof Rwekaza Mukandala at the opening of the fourth Julius Nyerere Intellectual Festival Week.
He said the successes could be demonstrated by the extraordinary enthusiasm often shown by participants in organised events and in regular release of relevant publications.
“There is always room for improvement and we have the obligation to maintain the good performance and strive even harder for greater achievements,” he said.
Mukandala said during the past three years the chair had sustained its core objectives.
He mentioned some of the objectives as reinvigorating and sustaining the university’s well known tradition of critical public discussions on issues pertaining to the well-being of humanity, and Africans in particular, and initiating and sustaining a tradition of honouring the founder of the nation and one of the greatest Pan Africanists, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere.
According to Prof Mukandala, this year’s festival had its own unique features, some of which would become self-evident as the week progressed but already some of its unique aspects were known.
He said this year’s festival had a unique theme, adding that it was well known that the first three festivals focused on the more easily visible political and economic dimensions of the Pan Africanist endeavour.
“In contrast, we consider an equally profound but less phenomenal aspect, namely the culture and role of the artist”.
Prof Mukandala cautioned that since the festival was not engine-powered, it would be individual and collective contributions by which the festival would run and fully achieve its objectives.