Most members of parliament yesterday welcomed the Strategic Development Plan launched by President Kikwete on Tuesday, but cautioned that its implementation must help Tanzanians lead better lives.
The MPs were contributing during a seminar organized by Planning Commission to educate them on the Plan which projects the economy to grow at between 8 and 10 percent annually in the next five years.
Kigoma-North legislator Kabwe Zitto said that the main challenge noted by economists in the country was how to link growth to poverty reduction.
He said Tanzania has no problem with economic growth because it has been growing annually but the problem was that it was not reflected in the lives of poor people.
Zitto said the plan must address the issue of rural growth, particularly on how to improve agriculture.
He also advised the government to put in place procedures for holding accountable executives who fail to discharge their responsibilities in the implementation of the plan.
The Member of Parliament for Kigoma-South David Kafulila said Tanzania’s economic growth must be translated into people’s lives to have impact.
“The economy can grow but if the outcome is not equally distributed it can not have any impact on the lives of poor people,” Kafulila said.
Abdulkarim Shah an MP for Mafia charged that most of the executives who are supposed to supervise implementation of various plans were not serious.
He recommended that executives who fail to supervise proper implementation of the plan be dismissed.
Shah however advised the government to allocate more funds to the ministry of lands to resolve disputes for effective implementation of the plan.
Wawi legislator Hamad Rashid said the plan was good but people should differentiate between politics and the economy for efficient implementation.
He noted that the Commission was facing shortage of staff and its budget has been reduced, wondering how the plan was expected to succeed under such circumstances.
Rashid also advised the government to make sure Tanzania have a say over their resources, by deciding in which areas to allow investors.
He however called on the government to more work on the plan because there were a number of shortfalls, noting that the priorities in the plan differ from those in the budget for the coming financial year.
For his part, Kibakwe legislator George Simbachawene said that it was not enough to say that the economy has grown without considering who was benefiting from the growth.
He also said the laws should state clearly who was responsible for what so that it would be easily to hold them accountable when they fail to deliver.
Simbachawene also questioned the position of locals in the plan to avoid leaving everything to foreigners.
On Tuesday, President Kikwete launched the five year strategic development plan 2011/12 to 2015/16which is part of the nation’s 25 years development plan, saying it is expected to cost 42.5trn/-.