WB praises TASAF, pledges more funds

10Jun 2021
Polycarp Machira
The Guardian
WB praises TASAF, pledges more funds

​​​​​​​THE World Bank has pledged to continue funding the Tanzania Productive Social Safety Net (PSSN) project which falls under the Tanzania Social Action Fund (TASAF), saying it has proved to be one of the best ways to reduce poverty.

Dr Taufila Nyamadzabo.

Dr Taufila Nyamadzabo, Executive Director for the World Bank’s ‘Africa Group One Constituency,’ expressed this sentiment yesterday during a field visit to PSSN II projects at Mwajamtaa in Dodoma city.

 “The World Bank remains committed to continuing supporting TASAF and we even think of increasing the funds since the programme is changing the lives of many people and boosting development,” he said.

Dr Nyamadzabo said he has visited Sudan, South Sudan, Kenya and Tanzania where similar programmes are being undertaken, noting that Tanzania’s project implementation showed greater promise.

He stated that TASAF operations were in line with the bank’s key objectives of poverty reduction and development promotion, underlining that Tanzania has made a lot of progress in terms of enrolment and achievements..

One of the success stories is that TASAF beneficiaries “are given time for their own assessment to continue with the programme or graduate out of it and evidently those who have reached a better level of economic income move out,” he said.

Availability of food where people can afford three meals per day and the extent of health where people get healthy food are some key great points of the programme, he stated

He also cited improvement of education, school attendance by children of the beneficiaries, as another milestone, while increasing pupils’ enrolment in schools from 60 to 98 percent “was not a mean achievement.”

Earlier, TASAF Executive Director Ladislaus Mwamanga had asserted that the PSSN program has contributed to the country’s economic growth, affirming that this achievement is owed to development partners along with the World Bank.

About 1.2m people are registered in the PSSN project, with many engaged in several projects, as

PSSN is meant to empowering poor households raise income and access social services like education and health, he stated

Many people whose lives have changed for the better are scheduled to leave the programme, with some 30,000 self-help projects taken up countrywide by the programme beneficiaries.

 “The projects are aimed at uplifting economic situations of the beneficiaries, being part of the plan to have them form savings groups,” he said, elaborating that through such groups, beneficiaries saved over 5.9 bn/- that is now revolving in the groups.

Until the end of the first phase in 2019, 23,000 groups with 311,000 members had contributed 5.9bn/- in savings that is used as a base to extend loans, he said, with many households benefitting directly by working on projects like digging dams and building roads.

 TASAF beneficiary Winfrida Mbago was joyful, saying through the programme she has managed to do a lot of things, obtaining 20,000/- each two months, saving part of it for a chicken project more than a year later.

TASAF (III) was launched in 2012 for ten years to 2023 in two terms of five years, where poverty alleviation would be evaluated.

The second phase of the project is aimed at reaching a third of villagers not yet connected with the project. Its earlier phase ran from 2005 to 2013 during which 12,347 social projects taking up 430bn/- were implemented in 126 districts, benefiting up to 18.6m people in all.

The first stage of the third phase folds up later this year, paving the way for the second stage, up to 2023.

A total of 4.1trn/- has so far been spent in implementing social projects, including the construction of classrooms, rural roads, health centres, teachers’ houses, irrigation systems and water reservoirs, benefiting residents in 40 districts in both parts of the Union.

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