Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda yesterday directed regional and district commissioners and administrative secretaries to hold regular meetings at which they would listen to problems facing wananchi and ensure that their rights are guaranteed.
“I request you to give the people chance to express their problems because some times you will find that their rights are denied …it is your responsibilities to ensure that they are not denied their rights.
The Premier made the remarks during the official opening of a ten-day special training for regional and district commissioners, and administrative secretaries which commenced yesterday in Dodoma.
Pinda quoted the late Mwalimu Nyerere as saying: “Leaders needed in our nation are those who are bothered by problems facing wananchi.” He said he hoped that after the training the country will have such leaders.
“You as leaders and top executives in your areas are an important team in knowing the challenges and problems faced by the people especially those in villages who constitute 80 percent of all Tanzanians,” he said.
He said in order to help Tanzanians to overcome poverty they were supposed to show the people what to do in order to overcome the challenges and complaints of wananchi.
“You are supposed to find solutions to problems facing wananchi instead of being part of them. In order to be successful in addressing all the problems every one must understand and accept that leadership is about working beyond the normal call of duty, thus you are supposed to volunteer more for the public and not to seek to benefit,” Pinda stressed.
He said after the training every one must assess the state of poverty in the areas they have been assigned to, the average income per person in districts and regions and see whether the population growth corresponded with the rate of economic growth in the respective areas.
“You are also supposed to know and identify economic opportunities which can help wananchi to break out of the vicious circle,” he said.
The PM told them to ensure that their areas have development projects which were being implemented at acceptable standards and value for money was being observed.
He called for discipline in revenue collection and expenditure of public funds and for the leaders to satisfy themselves that the funds were spent for the benefit of wananchi.
“I call upon RCs and DCs to supervise closely revenue collection in your councils because they are the main source of income. In the previous budget, councils planned to collect 320bn/- but up to January this year only 90bn/- had been collected,” he said.
“You must plan strategies of following up on revenue collection at your local government authorities in order to finance development in your areas from your own sources of income,” he added.
Elaborating on general responsibilities of leaders the Premier called them to fight corruption, drug abuse, and youth unemployment to ensure that their regions had sufficient food.
“It is a shame for an RC or DC to request for food because it is not true that there were no other opportunities to prevent the situation. There are a lot of opportunities to cultivate alternative crops, encourage your people to cultivate drought resistance crops and short term crops and if possible encourage them to produce surplus food so that they can have reserve and sell the surplus to get money,” he said.
The training involved 24 regional commissioners, 25 regional administrative secretaries, 133 district commissioners and 39 facilitators and 17 ministers.