Minister of State in the President’s Office (Good Governance) George Mkuchika has applauded non-government organisations (NGOs) overseen by First Ladies in the country for their commitment in complementing governments’ efforts in alleviating poverty.
Mkuchika underscored efforts put in place by Wanawake na Maendeleo Foundation (WAMA) founded by Salma Kikwete, spouse to President Jakaya Kikwete, and the Equal Opportunities for All Trust Fund (EOTF), an organisation founded by Anne Mkapa, wife to former president Benjamine Mkapa.
The minister expressed the appreciation yesterday in the National assembly when responding to a supplementary question from Special Seats MP Leticia Nyerere (Chadema).
The legislator had wanted the government to clarify if NGOs under First Ladies operate and serve Tanzanians.
Nyerere claimed that there were rumors that NGOs under the First Ladies operated according to political affiliation and that some groups were favoured.
Mkuchika said that both the NGOs overseen by the country’s First Ladies have been operating all over the country to serve Tanzanians' interests.
He said the organisations are committed to helping and supporting or individuals without regard to their political differences.
“EOTF has this year recruited more than 20,000 small-scale entrepreneurial women across the country from villages to cities. They were provided with entrepreneurial skills and markets for their products,” he said, adding, “All these are Tanzanians who were not asked about their political, religion or tribe status.”
The minister said however that WAMA, as part of its contribution to saving the lives of women and children in the country, disbursed 200m/- to facilitate the founding and construction of a Medical Women’s Association of Tanzania (MEWATA) hospital.
In addition, the organisation constructed Nyamisati Girls Secondary school to support orphans and girls with economic hardships to access formal education.
Meanwhile, the government has said there were no plans to put organisations overseen by the First Ladies under the government in an effort to enable future First Ladies lead them.
Mkuchika was responding to a basic question posed by Special Seats MP Naomi Kaihuka (Chadema), who had wished to know if the government planned to come up with a law to that effect.