In March 2017, when the World Bank President visited Tanzania and Rwanda I was made sleepless by his tweets. They displayed serious different conceptualization of development strategy between Tanzania and Rwanda. My previous read on Alec Ross’ Industries of the Future had further exacerbated the insomnia.
Well, this end week, Jack Ma, the Asian richest man out of his innovative Ali Baba has paid an engaging and youth-engaging visit to East Africa. But he only chose Kenya and Rwanda. I kept asking why didn’t he come to Tanzania – the Candle? May be it was busy sending rays of hope to Burundi as it extended the invitation to the “internationally snubbed” President of Burundi.
We have always been made to believe we are politically stable, we have the longest port/harbor in the region, we are blessed with natural resources etc. So may be we got lazy to develop what is really necessary for the contemporary development strategy- the brain: – skills, innovation, creativity, and positive attitude. These are more important – may be than political stability (traditionally defined) and those other advantages we always think we have.
See, Kenya is in elections period under the context that saw elections violence only 10 years ago. Rwanda had genocide less than 30 years ago. But the two countries apparently keep beating Tanzania i in innovation and creativity.
Thinking of that…may be – relevant political stability in the contemporary world – is that which has to do with the political mindset and political culture in the minds of the citizens. Is there a political stability to allow free and crazy thinking? That allows a destruction? – Is our politics allowing education to encourage such critical crazy thinking that leads to innovation?
Arguments against that may arise based on Rwanda- but as much as it has a high iron ended leader, data and visible outlook of the tiny country has proven presence of disruptive mindset allowed in the country. President Kagame knows the 21st century ways of doing things despite his authoritarian rule.
I should not say much, but I call all of us- beloved youths of Tanzania- to evaluate ourselves…let’s not focus on insta posts etc, lets focus on how to create platforms such as insta etc so youths from other countries can spend hours on them…while we fill the dollars in our banks.
We have our local excellent example – Diamond Platinum – the CEO of WCB – who is, I think, is an admirable innovator in many aspects and provides an example of industries that we can invest on further…He is a truly potential Dangote in innovation.
Visiting a country is a choice. This choice is made based on aesthetics. Aesthetics are complex. The decision to visit Kenya and Rwanda by the Ali Baba doyen, could have been made based on commercially viable and exploitable environments.
Magufulification of economy in Tanzania at the moment repels investors who may want lean environments, economic regime-wise, to operate.
The choice to leave Tanzania may be mainly to do with the fact that the rules are changing. “Changing times are coming, the weak are getting stronger” so a line in a roots and culture song goes… and such times are ‘interesting’ to both locals and investors. Perhaps, Ali Baba’s boss could not just stomach the type of an economic regime environment under the “Bulldozer!”
I love this >> “I should not say much, but I call all of us- beloved youths of Tanzania- to evaluate ourselves…let’s not focus on insta posts etc, lets focus on how to create platforms such as insta etc so youths from other countries can spend hours on them…while we fill the dollars in our banks”
Is it possible that Tanzania is like a duck – calm and a tad boring above the water but paddling furiously below and making significant progress below the surface? I should however state that I am an admirer of H.E. Magufuli so I am probably biased 🙂