Early this week, the #WorldBank President (WBP), Dr. Kim Jong Kim, visited Tanzania. The main public activity was to launch the construction of a flyover intersection in Dar-es-Salaam city. This event was, unfortunately, overtaken by a side “incidence” in relations to the Dar-es-Salaam Regional Commissioner (RC), who had then been accused (with chains of evidence) of attacking a media house. The President of the United Republic of Tanzania (URTP) took advantage of the timely launching event/platform and rebuked all citizens who has been engaging in discussing the RC issue on the social media. URTP, instead, encouraged the RC to “continue to work hard”.
That was the part of the speech in the main public event that the WBP attended in the country. As Nyerere said way back in 1968 in his Freedom and Development speech that the development of the people is more crucial than material (roads, buildings, etc), the main “development agenda” of launching the flyover did not attract much coverage even in the mainstream newspapers.
The whole attention was directed to the URTP expression of the special protection to the RC amidst a very negative context on his side. The social media and Internet, which URTP seemingly does not approve of, became even more vibrant in discussing the RC. It seems that people could not be stopped even with such high orders.
Well, there’s already much discussion going on that particular RC issue with more interesting development on the same. I wouldn’t duplicate them here since they are more fun as they go live on various social media platforms. My interest here is to show the different experience that the WBP encountered between his visits to the two countries, Tanzania and Rwanda. This was evident from his tweets…
WBP Tweets on Tanzania’s visit
Tweets from Rwanda visit (immediate days after Tanzania visits)
Those tweets made me sleepless, especially when I thought of the “Industries of the Future”. It is evident that Rwanda is way ahead of its game and that explains how the country is doing very well. There’s a practical mission from her leader who knows how the world functions and how development is achieved in the 21st century. In spite of the fact that Pres. Kagame is known for his iron high hand, he has to be commended for having an effective mission for his country. We have heard of substantial amount of time he puts in reading- in particular the famous Harvard Business Reviews – as well as his listening ear to advisors – such as the author of the Purpose Driven Life- Rick Warren. Being informed by such can partly hint the reasons for WBP’s experience difference.
Whereas the WBP was set to engage with youths, private sector, and also IT Hubs in Rwanda, in my country he was made to sit and listen to a speech that was protecting and by default supporting an attack on media as well as Internet. What a difference!
Sadly, since 1960s and 70s, the World Bank has been funding and supporting similar projects of infrastructure (roads, etc) in Tanzania, what a shame 50 years + forward, we are inviting them to do the same? Is this not the question we ought to ask ourselves? We need a change- otherwise we are in circles…circles of poverty and unnecessary show off of power. We need CHANGE.