Challenge of living Dr Mengi’s ideals

10May 2019
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Challenge of living Dr Mengi’s ideals

IT WAS the end of a larger than life experience as the body of the late Executive Chairman of IPP Dr Reginald Mengi was lowered to its final resting place at his rural home in Machame East ward of Hai district, Kilimanjaro region.

Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa lays a wreath at the tomb of the late Dr. Reginald Mengi during the burial ceremony at Kisereni village, Machame East ward in Kilimanjaro region yesterday. Photo: PMO

The moment saw thousands of mourners including the departed businessman’s family, IPP employees, top government officials leaders and senior clergymen in emotional expressions of sorrow in a mixture of praise, prayers and tears.

After the requiem mass attended by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa, some cabinet ministers and prominent public officials, back in the village there were emotional scenes as Dr Mengi's coffin was being lowered into the grave.

The body arrived at Dr Mengi's family cemetery at around 4 pm, with a vast crowd gathered on the sides of the road leading to Kisereni village to see the convoy carrying Dr Mengi's remains.

Speaking on behalf of the government, Premier Majaliwa described Dr Mengi as a special person and industrialist who will be remembered for the unique spirit he harboured against poverty and through that he spent his lifetime encouraging and enabling others get out of the poverty trap.

“Dr Mengi was kind, intelligent, a mentor, media leader and industrialist who used his education, skills and knowledge for the benefit of all, especially people with special needs,” he said.

He called on Dr Mengi’s family to honour the chairman by supervising well his projects and companies, urging them not to hesitate to ask for the government’s support whenever they feel things are not going well.

“The government is with you (the family) and we will always be there to provide support whenever needed,” he declared.

The head of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania (ELCT) Bishop Dr Frederick Shoo urged government leaders and rich people to wisely use their wealth and positions by assisting the disadvantaged.

He said there are a few wealthy people who use their riches or power to humiliate others, cautioning that Tanzanians need to avoid judging one another and instead enhance unity.

Bishop Dr Shoo underlined that segregating one another is a sin since Almighty God wants those blessed with wealth support the less privileged and not disgrace them.

“We should use our positions and wealth to serve others. Let us put aside our selfishness and pride,” he said, quipping that such problems are mostly noticeable with young leaders.

“You get satisfaction by spending your wealth for others. May the Almighty God help us to live in accordance with his words and continue praying for the bereaved family,” he said calling upon Tanzanians to embrace the giving heart and many good things that the late Dr Reginald Mengi did during his lifetime.

He said that Dr Mengi’s wealth was for living up to God’s will since the Lord sought to use the late Dr Mengi as an example of how individuals can be effective bridges towards eradicating poverty.

“There are no reasons for ignoring others once you command resources or influence, since we all live for God, so we are supposed to be humble,” Bishop Dr Shoo intoned.

Executive Director of the Tanzania Private Sector Foundation (TPSF), Godfrey Simbeye explained how he related with Dr Mengi apart from the TPSF connection.

“He was a friend who always pin-pointed opportunities and wanted me to plan and have my own company that will employ Tanzanians in need of such an opening,” he said.

 Simbeye asked the media to arrange programs that will give room to review Dr Mengi’s book ‘I CAN, I MUST, I WILL’, to help the public to understand it and take actions.

“You have to come up with programs that will give as a chance to analyse Dr Mengi’s book. This will encourage more people in the country to try and emulate his steps for their own success,” he said.

Reading Dr Mengi’s biography, his son Abdiel said it is not easy to speak all out here as Dr Mengi has done a lot of good things in the society... “But all in all, we thank the government and its institutions, our close relatives, IPP staff and executives for their love and support.”

“Dr Mengi had three key characteristics. He was patriotic, self-confident and had no fear to break through to achieve what he wanted it to be,” he emphasized.

On Wednesday, President John Magufuli, Vice President Samia Suluhu Hassan, scores of public officials and a large crowd of city residents paid their last respects to Dr Mengi at Karimjee Grounds.

Dr Mengi who died on Thursday last week in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, was laid to rest at his rural home, Nkuu Sinde-Kisereni next to the grave of his son Rodney Mutie.

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