Daunting challenges for new Dar mayors

18Jan 2016
Felister Peter
The Guardian
Daunting challenges for new Dar mayors
  • • Observers say jubilation will likely be short-lived

DAR ES SALAAM’S Ilala and Kinondoni municipalities have new mayors and deputy mayors – all four from opposition parties and all facing daunting challenges with many observers saying government support will be necessary.

Most people interviewed after the weekend’s mayoral elections see the biggest of these challenges as including getting enough financial and other resources to make the central business district of the city of four-plus million glitter.
The councillors on Saturday voted in Chadema and Civic United Front (CUF) candidates to lead the two municipalities, both for decades under the ruling CCM that however lost its clout in Dare s Salaam in the last year’s General Election.
Dar es Salaam is notorious for poor waste management, chaotic public transport, unplanned settlements and corruption in almost every sector. Many people are upbeat that things will improve with the opposition in control in the two municipalities, but the jubilation may be short-lived.

Most respondents were of the view that the new leadership ought to strengthen and expand City Hall’s revenue collection base since development of the municipalities severally and the city as an entity depends on the collected funds.
They said corruption is rampant in the municipalities, as evidenced by the qualified audit reports they have been getting from year to year.

Analyst Eric Mwakibete said the new leadership should work in different style as people expect to see what they will do for them.
“Revenue collection and funds management are core problems with municipals…they should strive to get unqualified certificates” he said noting that funds for development projects should be directed to infrastructure development especially ring roads and drainage systems.
Mwakibete urged that both mayors face a challenge of unplanned settlements suggesting for them to prohibit construction of houses at illegal places.
“Previously, people were left to erect buildings randomly…we want to see a planned city with improved infrastructures” he said calling on them to learn from Karatu municipal council of which since it was taken by opposition some years back it has never failed to reach its revenue collection target.
Acting Executive Director, Legal and Human Rights Center (LHRC) Lulu Urio said people should expect positive changes as the Full Councils are made of variety people with different perceptions.
“We expect the councilors to make wise and proper decisions…when people with different perceptions meet there is always good outcome”, she said expressing hope over development of the country’s business capital.
The Deputy Secretary General of CUF (Mainland) Magdalena Sakaya said that city residents should expect a participatory kind of leadership since their party insists of equal rights to everyone regardless of their political affiliation and religion.
Sakaya said during the tenure issues of revenue collection, social and economic development will be given priority. She said it was a shame for the country’s business capital to be dirty and experience cholera frequently; insisting waste management will be done accordingly.
A commentator, Adam Ringson urged the opposition leaders to work tirelessly because their victory is considered a ‘case study’ by the citizenry. He said the important thing for them is to work closely with the executives at local government levels.
“The opposition is not coming with new laws as the municipals have its own governing regulations and plans…they should set up priorities to ensure proper implementation”, he said.
According to him, the opposition should maintain the recent record of revenue collections in Kinondoni municipal. He said: “Kinondoni is now doing well on revenue collections…they should maintain it and ensure 60 percent of the collected money is directed to development projects”.
The Coalition for the Defence of the People’s Constitution (Ukawa) has won mayoral elections in Ilala and Kinondoni Municipalities in Dar es Salaam.
Dar es Salaam city has for the first time in post-independence history fallen into the hands of opposition, with exception of Temeke which has gone to the ruling party Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM).
With its majority mayoral seats, the opposition is likely to produce a mayor of the city under whose jurisdictions is the municipal mayors.
CCM was gradually losing its political grip in Dar es Salaam since October 25 general election when it found itself gathering a negligible cache of only four seats in constituencies where Ukawa did not field a parliamentary candidate. The rest out of the 10 contested seats went to Ukawa.
In Kinondoni which has four constituencies, Ubungo, Kibamba, Kinondoni and Kawe, Chadema won 18 wards; CUF won four wards while the ruling party won 12 wards. In Ilala which has three constituencies namely Ilala, Segerea and Ukonga, Chadema won in 17 wards, CUF seven wards while CCM in 12 wards.
In Temeke District Council which has three constituencies, namely Temeke, Mbagala and Kigamboni, CCM won in 19 wards, CUF in seven wards while Chadema won in five wards.
ENDS

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