Thursday, July 24, 2008

Get to know about DITF history: Is it a place of business?

BETWEEN 28th June and 8th July every year, Tanzania’s Board of External Trade (BET) organizes a trade fair referred to as the “Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair”, or DITF in its short form which also is commonly known by many as Saba Saba. This is an annual event whose purpose is to open an opportunity for local people as well as foreign entrepreneurs who meets to connect with each other in terms of business deals. But many show-goers have described the place as a profit making business area. According to archive records, the fair was local in terms of outlook when first inaugurated in 1962 a year after the country attained its independence. The fair was under the then Ministry of Trade and Cooperative Unions and it was known as “The National Agricultural and Trade Fair (NATF)” The fair had involved only some small private companies, farmers and government ministries at the beginning.

This is the outside outlook of the DITF ground which is usually written with a welcoming message such as the 32nd year of the trade fair over the main gate. It has been like this since the 1st year of the event when its second inauguration took place in 1976The first inauguration was held in 1962 a year after the country attained its independence.

The latter gradually withdrew between 1970 and 1980 years respectively when serious work aimed to put the fair at the international scene came into the minds of the government through its organizers. But this was not enough to transform it into what it is today. Products at the DITF enabled the fair not only to have international recognition, but also rendered outsiders to bring in their products for exhibition.

Traffic police officers deployed for security reasons in reception of the country’s Prime Minister, Mr. Mizengo Pinda and his delegation to the fair ground. This was on the third day since the fair started.

The opening ceremonies of the DITF in the past were being graced by neighboring African Presidents, but for the 32nd occasion was graced by Tanzanian Prime Minister Mr. Mizengo Pinda (standing center) who was the guest of hounour during the official opening of the fair ground. The occasion is normally accompanied by giving out certificates of participation as well as other prizes to organizations participating in the fair. Here a representative of the Tanzania Telecommunication Company (TTCL) comes down the stage after he had received a trophy handed to him by the Premier on behalf of his company which had become an overall winner in the ICT category. On the Premier’s left is the Minister for Trade, Industry and Marketing Dr. Mary Nagu while on his right is the BET’s Director General Mr. Ramadhani Khalfani.

Prime Minister Mr. Mizengo Pinda being taken around few pavilion whose organizations won prizes in the fair.

This is the main entrance to the DITF ground that is thronged by show goers as they can be seen off the main road going to Mbagala.

Through this change, it has been for Tanzanians not only to learn from what others are doing, but also to sell what they produce. During the 1970s, the dominant features in the fairs of those days was the presence of parastatals with their exhibited products produced on a collective basis.

The entrance of the DITF grounds is normally decorated with national flags of the countries represented by international companies participating in the fair.

When BET took over the organization of the DITF in 1976, it had a foresight in its mind of changing its character and outlook. BET embarked on the fair grounds improvement and modernization as its first and major strategic work. This included the macadamizing of avenues and increasing the number of pavilions.

As you enter the gate, the first building you come across is the BET pavilion which faces the main gate, and it’s in this pavilion whereby announcements are made now and then to keep people abreast with what is going on. The messages relayed to show-goers are crucial as some are about the recovery of a lost property.

In 1983, the government gave a grant which enabled all streets within the fair grounds to be tarmacked. BET couldn’t however get extra funds to build new pavilions and instead it continued to renovate and made some improvements on the existing ones. To do this drudgery work, it invited and encouraged more private firms to take part in the trade exhibitions. It’s at this point that the epoch of private firms began and their influence in participating in the fair started to be felt.

People lined up to cut their tickets, adults were paying Tshs. 2,000 (US$ 2) while children went in after paying Tshs. 500 (US$ 0.5 cent)

The Saba Saba Trade Fair, as it is now called has over the period grown from a mere domestic exhibition of agricultural produce to an international phenomenon with a wide range of international exhibitions ranging from manufactured products to modern computer soft wares and automobiles. It is quite of this that a new era and global trade was ushered in Tanzania with the beginning of International Trade Fairs organized from a local perspective

Behind BET’s building as you are walking along Taifa Avenue towards PTA hall, extreme left is a large pavilion that houses the University of Dar es Salaam. There were so many people along the street.

Going on its 32nd year now since its second inauguration in 1976, DITF has been enjoying support of the government through the Ministry of Industry, Trade, and Marketing, the Tanzania Chamber of Commerce and Industries (CTI), Small Industries Development Organization (SIDO) as well as other institutions. Despite of a strong criticism which has been leveled against DITF’s performance that it’s a place of show casing business merchandise, the exhibitions have made a good number of strides since their establishment 32 years ago. Not only that the fair has been transformed in terms of name, place, ministry, number of participants and nature of business, but also it has changed in terms of structure, scope and exhibited products.

There were some concerts that looked so funny to the people, like in this case, a man who changed his physical appearance and looked like a European was an attraction to the people. You can see him performing a dance while surrounded by people who became interested to look at his performances.

The fair grounds, since inaugurated by the late Mwalimu J.K Nyerere (First Tanzanian President) in 1962, it had 10 days of exhibition with the last day being climaxed on 8th of every July each year. The exhibitions are being held at Mtoni SabaSaba suburb in Temeke district, Dar es Salaam region at a place known as Mwalimu J.K Nyerere Trade Fair grounds. Otherwise known as SabasSaba in Kiswahili language, this is because of the date inherited from Tanganyika African National Union (TANU) to signify the latter’s establishment on July 7th 1954. (TANU is the first political party formed in the then Tanganyika territory which drove the majority of Africans in the struggle of independence). The fair has moved from a mere agricultural exhibition to one dominated by parastatal organizations to an International phenomenon currently driven by the private sector.

These two people had put on their faces and got seated in front of a pavilion selling beer and other drinks. Their presence attracted mostly children who all the time could stand close watching them.

A current show-goer of the DITF would be surprised to learn that the products displayed in those days were agricultural, livestock, natural resources produce and cultural products. These are contrary to what one could see today.

DITF has traveled a long way from a local stage for farmers and livestock keepers to an organ that carries many of Tanzania’s trade aspirations to the wider global horizon. Serious work aimed to put the fair at the international scene was done between 1980 and 1990 with foreign countries participating in large numbers and a variety of goods and services were displayed, and this is enough to transform it into what it is today. Products at the DITF enabled the fair not only to have international recognition, but also has rendered outsiders to bring in their products for exhibition. Since its inauguration, BET has gained a wealth of experience in supporting Tanzanian exporters in their efforts to export more.

These are not people, but rather plastic made to look like people placed at the entrance of the Sahara Communications Limited pavilion. The company brought household materials for exhibition.

The role of BET in promoting Tanzania exports has become even more prominent with the emergence in large numbers of small and medium, entrepreneurs keen to enter export markets. The experiences gained has been instrumented in increasing a large number of foreign enterprises in doing business with Tanzania, since the fair is a recognized and approved event by the Union of International Trade Fairs officially known as the Union Des Foires Internationasles (UFI).

Among the most fascinating things at the DITF are animals like a male lion, leopards, hyena and cheetah. But were also stuffed animals like this one I had time to stand beside it at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion

According to fair organizers, the exhibition hall facilities range from individual own pavilions to large exhibition halls of up to 4,000 meter square gross area. The fair grounds have rentable spaces amounting to about 30,000 meter square net. In addition to the halls/pavilions, open space are available for exhibits requiring outdoor display. The range of exhibit includes the following:- Agricultural products, Food and Beverages, Textile, garments and yarns, Manufactured products and construction materials. Other range of exhibits are Automobiles, Electrical goods and appliances, Chemical and cosmetics, Timber and Furniture, Trade service, Engineering products, Machinery, Information technology, Gifts articles and handicrafts, Consultancy and Training. To make the trade fair active throughout the year, various non-exhibition activities take place. Due to location, size and convenience of the halls, the fair grounds are widely used for social functions such as wedding ceremony, international boxing tournaments, parties, music shows and concerts, religious functions, new products launches and etc.

This is a pavilion belonging to the police force whereby they had enlighted the public on mostly how they take care of the civilian safety in the country. They also showed people various police ranks which starts from a Police constable to Inspector General of Police.

There are several restaurants offering services during the trade fair. Both African and International cuisine are served. In additional to the high class restaurants, there are also middle class restaurants offering mostly local dishes. The DITF has a large car parking lot which is situated outside the fair complex. Although the security for cars is in place, parking is at owner’s risk and owners are charged for using parking spaces. Parking inside the complex for special purposes costs more.

Since independence in 1961, the police force in the country had had eight Inspector Generals who were arranged in order of their seniority as you can see them inside police pavilion. IGP Said Mwema is the current holding a position in the force.

The fair grounds complex in general s being supplied with ample water for various purposes, electricity is in constant supply, pavilions have enough sockets and overhead lighting. Telephone services are found at the Tanzania Telecommunications Company Ltd (TTCL) pavilions. The company is a regular participant of the fair.

This is the pavilion belonging to the National Kiswahili Council. The council is remembered for the role it played in collaboration with the University of Dar es Salaam, Computer Science department in the development of Kiswahili ICT software in a project known as Kilinux which was established by ICT researchers at the dept of the Computer Science at the University of Dar es Salaam. The first Swahili software was converted from Mozilla Fire fox of the USA and is now workable after it was translated into Kiswahili language.

I visited the place and here is what I can give you as my perspective. You can find pretty things as much as you want and walking around the pavilions is another story altogether. The streets are very narrow and to some areas within, they become so congested to accommodate a large multitude of the people who walks along visiting each pavilion after the other. The exercise makes people becomes tiresome and worrisome even though it’s just a mere look at the majority of the promotional exhibits that is designed to attract potential buyers and curious passerby to see of what local and international entrepreneurs have to offer.

This is a large pavilion named after the first President of Zanzibar, the late Abeid Karume. It’s in this pavilion that most foreign companies and their representatives hired to show case their products

As you enter the DITF grounds, at Karume stadium grounds on your left is the expensive grass thatched Kizota inn. Nothing really happens there during the day except for a few people eating the common African staple food, Ugali with fish or meat and other typical dishes at the restaurant-cum bar. Show goers once are briefed of the types of foods and their prices, they raised complaints about the expensive food sold there. But the real action starts there in the evening when the beer companies kick off their promotions. A crowd of people gather to sip their beers as they enjoy live performers. At that time, Kizota inn turns into a full fledged bar, whether mostly the social elite clad in trendy casual wear. For the beer company is a business, but for the crowds it’s a spot to kick back and relax, catch up with other fair attendees and sway to the music.

The Republic of Kenya had been represented by over 15 companies and had their compartments inside Karume pavilion.

Across from Kizota inn is the Board of External Trade (BET) exhibit facing the gate where music booms from speakers on top throughout the day until the fair closes at 06:00 pm. Apart from music, the speakers outside there are used to air out messages to would be show-goers. Several announcements are made to highlight new things to the people or if sometimes something like a lost property is recovered, or a child is lost and found somewhere alone or anything related to it.

People who had thronged at Kenya pavilion to see what types of goods they had brought with them for the exhibition.

The two roads leading to the grounds’ major activity are clustered by loitering teens, middle aged potential customers and mothers accompanying excitable young children, all donning newly acquired promotional T-shirts and caps from the various exhibits. Indeed, if there is one word to characterize sabasaba. It’s without doubts ‘giveaways’

This is a US Embassy pavilion which had been decorated with well known statue, “Liberty Statue”. It’s one of the great seven wonders of the world. Its height is 112 meters, weighing unconfirmed kilograms. The Liberty Statue which is a well known structure throughout the world is a female gender that is crowned, a MOCI VI. The statue was given to the people of the United States of America by the French government was stationed on its current position in New York city in 1776.

Dar es Salaam is a well situated habour that gives the DITF an advantage as the doorway for international businessmen to access the neighboring interior landlocked African countries that includes Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and Democratic Republic of Congo. To that effect, the fair also has attracted a significant number of exhibitors from Japan, Spain, Korea, Syria, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) among others.

The US government is a great donor to Tanzania’s most development initiatives. Statistics shows that, up to June 2008, the US government has donated about US$ 662 million to the government of Tanzania and out of this, about US$ 400 million were directly donated. The country leads in the fight over famine in the world, and up to now about half of the food donated worldwide comes from USA.

From other countries among the above, who turned up to show case their products, faced with difficulties of a language barrier between them and Tanzanian customers. Many of these international exhibits had neither a translator nor a representative who could speak English or Kiswahili. Despite of these difficulties, still entrepreneurs managed to carry out business with them, this was mostly through stilted conversation and elaborate gesturing.

The US government is the leading donor in the country’s health sector. A Presidential program in the fight to reduce HIV/AIDS spread is a great effort which is being shown by the US government to Tanzania and it aims at fighting against the scourge. In doing this effectively, the US government has contributed the sum of US$ 817.1 million to the government of Tanzania in the fight against HIV/AIDS disease.

All along the street built within the fair grounds, one could come across large multitude of people walking in single file, you may wonder the majority attending the fair are women and young children, but there are also a number of youths some dressed smartly as if on a special outing.

The showcasing of ICT tools was not left behind, computers are tools that speeds up development and stores information. This photo depicts a local firm based in Dar es Salaam that is engaged in the sale of computers and other ICT accessories.

I came across many youths, young ladies and boys who are hired by some companies and many of them had been solicited to perform or dance at various pavilions to attract customers to companies’ outlets. While others seemed to have drawn to the pavilions simply to enjoy the entertainment and might score a fee prize not necessarily to buy anything or subscribe to any service as might be the companies’ intention. I came across that big building constructed along the main Taifa Avenue which this time housed the University of Dar es Salaam pavilion. I saw several books written by senior lecturers that includes a research works and other collections, such as those done by the current Minister for Trade, Industries and Marketing, Dr. Mary Nagu, as well as a research work by the current Minister for Livestock and Fishing activities Mr. John Pombe Maghufuli. The pavilion also promoted the Institute of Journalism and Mass Communication and the student’s radio station which transmits from University of Dar es Salaam, Mlimani area.

These are stuffed heads of various animals which had been placed over the walls of a pavilion belonging to the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism.

I moved to the southern side of the fair ground to a place known as Soweto where the majority of eating joints are located. As I moved along with my eight year old daughter who had felt hunger by that time, she asked for food. I decided to look for a nice restaurant but the food available at the fair ranges from low cost to very chic and pricy options. There are a variety of mini-restaurants but you might expect few only with cheaper eateries.

These are school kids of one of the academy schools in Dar es Salaam who were brought along by their teachers for what was termed as a study tour and learn about the fair. They were interested to take a photo while standing near the stuffed lion inside the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion.

Everybody who popped in that place became perplexed after being briefed of the menu and the prices of food sold there upon their arrival. It’s in this place whereby people took time to talk about the fair as a place of business. After having taken little food that consisted of fried potatoes as well as drinks, I left the place and on my way I met few other journalists each one of them carried a handbook that signified to me they were at work.

An attendant inside the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion standing near a stuffed leopard to make sure that it’s not touched by people or children, despite of the instruction on a paper written in Kiswahili language, ‘Usiguse’ meaning don’t touch.

They were all sweating and as you know walking along the vast compound for a journalist is a usual thing, though they had nowhere to rest down. I thought hurriedly in my mind that it was necessary for the organizers to arrange a special area on which they could build a media center whereby a handful of them who comes for normal coverage would get an easy access to file on their stories to their editors. Imagine with all these buildings around, you can’t find even an internet cafĂ©.

Looking on with a cheerful face is my 8 year old daughter who spent long hours walking along with me as I take note to few but interesting points about the fair.

Justina Tumbo, a newly recruited journalist with an English daily paper in the city also wondered why the BET does not think of that, however, she goes outside the fair grounds or sometimes travel all the way back to her newsroom and begins writing up a story, an aspect according to her is time wasteful.

This is the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion which was busy throughout the day because of many people who had turned up to see what was inside. There were two passages one for entry and exit to control a mass movement of the people inside who thronged the pavilion. Analysts say that, about 80 percent of DITF show goers becomes interested to see animals which are rarely seen in their every day’s life.

Most people were impressed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion that became the most fascinating place to all visitors. It’s here that I took most of my time to learn new things about animals that I can’t have time to narrate in paragraphs or explain into details.

This is not a real human being, rather it’s a statue strategically placed at the entrance to an area temporarily called as an animal zoo of the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism where there were animals, birds and reptiles inside a zoo.

At the back of a pavilion, was constructed a temporary passage through which people passed round to see a man made animal zoo, this is an area set apart for the Ministry of Natural Resources to showcase animals of different species ranging from birds, reptiles, and fierce animals like a male lion and a leopard.

These are birds of the flamingo species inside their makeshift cage.

As I passed through the gate entering the zoo, a statue made of a human being was stationed at the gate as though directing people which way should they follow.

People tend to squat down a little bit close to a lion’s makeshift cage while taking photographs for the memory. A cameraman who is not seen focus them while directing his camera where a lion is.

It was made in such a manner that it had carried a small placard on which an arrow was drawn to signify the direction to which people should follow while entering the area. When I entered inside, I saw flamingoes and Ostrich, these were the types of birds brought this time by the Ministry, then there were a monkey and a chimpanzee.

A lady is taking a photograph of a monkey species.

This is another monkey species which was an attraction to the people who visited the place. It had clung on the bars of a makeshift cage when it saw people passing along.

This is a male lion as it moves around but its movement is only confined within its makeshift cage. According to an attendant, a lion eats up to 25 kilograms of fresh meat a day.

Other animals were a lion, a leopard and a hyena, these are predators according to their nature of creation. For reptiles were a number of snakes of different species all placed in one cage that was partitioned. Each one of these was put inside a makeshift cage that people were able to see them from outside through a transparent glass strategically placed to separate them. There was also a python which was left in an open space but its movements were only confined within the cage onto which it was built. A python is the type of a snake that became an attraction to the visitors as it’s rarely seen. It seemed as if almost everybody was for the first time seeing such a creature.

People looking at a python, a snake which was brought and placed at an open space but surrounded inside a makeshift. A python like one here is over 10 feet long.

As I came out of the animal zoo, I head straight back to the Ministry’s pavilion and walked inside of it. There were stuffed animals like a lion, leopard and others stuffed in half way and hanged on the wall off a pavilion house. These were an attraction to the people especially children who took an advantage of taking photographs while standing close to them.

This is a stuffed lion that became an interesting artifact to show-goers inside the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism pavilion.

My general views in this event might have looked so different from others in terms of thinking and creating ideas, though there might be one who might have had come up with more brilliant ideas, but I don’t know. I actually didn’t see anything new which I had never met in my life before in this event which I could presume to be unique. I thought I could come across something that would probably help cut down the expensive life of an ordinary Tanzanian. But I saw there was none other than being a place of extravagance and expenditure. Could I have come across any technology that would help a mere Tanzanian get out of poverty, then I would have appreciated the move. But nobody or an organization ever came with a new technology to show case and that if applied by Tanzanians would get out of abject poverty. From this point of view, I really felt pity to especially few whom I saw but to my understanding had expected to experience a new change in their life out of this event but virtually gained nothing. With the majority of show goers who are still poor and earn one US Dollar per day, I thought of passing this message to the organizers that, they could change their mind and try to organize the fair whereby people would be allowed to enter free of charge. They could only depend on the amount of money charged from participants which of course is a lot to make it existing. But all that I can judge is that, DIFT is indeed a place of showcasing business merchandises specifically for certain group of people. The organizers, the BET should at least in this era of globalization think in terms of playing round with new technologies that is emerging and which would help our people adopt for their future life.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Get to know the evaporation and condensation systems as related with Air-Conditioning in cars.

JUST about every modern car, a truck or a saloon car of any type sold these days is having an air conditioning system in it. It's so common that most people take it for granted. You press the button for air conditioning while in your car and cold air starts to flow out of the car's vents. Air conditioning is a system used to create and maintain a comfortable driving environment inside a vehicle. It does this by transferring the heat from inside a vehicle to the outside keeping the temperature down inside the car. The system cools, dries and cleans the air. The most basic systems have manual temperature control but systems are becoming more and more complex with full climate control on a lot of modern cars which rely on a lot of sensors to maintain the selected temperature. It's easy as well as simple, and it's a major convenience. Could you imagine driving to a job interview or for an appointment with a vulnerable person in the city center if your car didn't have air conditioning systems? By the time you got to your interview, you'd be a sweaty, stinky mess. Have you ever wondered how the air conditioning in vehicles works? If you're like most people, you probably haven't. But here is a little education you can take a note. Air conditioning is the process by which air is cooled and dehumidified. The air conditioning in cars, as well as those in offices all work the same way. Even a refrigerator in effect, works like an air conditioner. While there are many physical principles that relate to air conditioning, that explains the general concepts of automotive air conditioning, the components used is what one need to know to keep car's air-conditioning system working properly.

This is how an Air-Conditioning system in cars looks like in its position inside a saloon car.

Did you know that when you turn on the air-condition in your car, you are burning extra gasoline to make yourself feel cooler? It's weird to think that by burning something you become cooler, but it's true. According to an elementary physics study, air conditioning systems operate on the principles of evaporation and condensation. Here's a simple example of evaporation. Imagine that you're swimming around in your neighbor's backyard pool on a summer day. As soon as you get out, you start to feel cooler. Why? The water on your body starts to evaporate and turns into water vapor. And as it evaporates, it draws heat away from your body, and you get goose bumps. Now let's say your neighbor hands you a big glass of ice-cold lemonade. You take a sip and set it down on a table. After a minute or two, you notice that water has collected on the outside of the glass. This is condensation. The air surrounding the glass becomes cooler when it encounters the cold glass, and the water vapor the air is carrying condenses into water. Both of these examples occur at normal atmospheric pressure. But higher pressures can also change a vapor (or a gas) into a liquid. For example, if you look at a typical butane cigarette lighter, you can see liquid inside it. But as soon as you push down on the button, butane gas comes out. Why? The butane is under high pressure inside the cigarette lighter. This high pressure causes the butane to take liquid form. As soon as the butane is released and it encounters normal atmospheric pressure, it turns back into a gas. Those are the basic ideas and how do they apply to making car's vents blow cool air? The principles of evaporation and condensation are utilized in car's air-conditioning system by a series of components that are connected by tubing and hoses. There are six basic components namely the compressor, condenser, receiver-drier, thermostatic expansion valve, the evaporator and the life-blood of the air-conditioning system, the refrigerant.

And this is the machine inside a compact that shows vents through which fresh and cold air comes out when it’s switched on.

Refrigerant is a liquid capable of vaporizing at a low temperature. In the past, R-12 refrigerant was used in cars. But this chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) is harmful to the earth's ozone layer. Consequently, all vehicles built after 1996 use R-134A, a more environmentally friendly refrigerant. The best thing about air conditioning is that all you have to do is press a button to make it work. Air conditioning systems are pretty reliable. On a modern and relatively new vehicle, it is rare to have problems. And if there are problems, they are pretty much one of two things such like, there is no cool air or insufficient cool air. This is if you own an older car and its air-conditioning system doesn't seem to be working properly.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Why the government does not value small scale farmers?

IT is extremely an annoying factor to see that most Tanzanian small scale farmers suffers a lot while looking for a reliable local markets to sell their farm commodities during harvesting seasons. The last year’s debate in parliament that focused on how to help small scale farmers with credit facilities in the country during the budget sessions seems to have hit a snag as nobody cares for low income earners such as these. A promise by the fourth phase government that it would create a conducive environment for its people for the attainment of better life earlier during the campaigns in 2005 before it came into being three years ago, seems to have been repudiated and instead people continues to experience hard life that is exacerbated by inflation.

Petty traders selling oranges spread on the ground. This is at Gongo-La-Mboto 25 kilometers away on the outskirts of the Dar es Salaam city. The area is close to a daladala bus stand. Each piece is sold at Tshs. 50/- or it might be at the lowest price this time for their supply is still high.

It is an orange fruit picking season of the year and farmers from Tanga and Morogoro regions which are the leading in the production of this product have nowhere to sell their farm produce which are picked in bulk. In Dar es Salaam region which has a population of approximately 4.2 million people, petty traders are currently taking an advantage of selling the product to earn their living oblivious to the health danger posed to them. Everywhere you walk around, in streets, orange sellers are scattered all over the place. In some other suburbs within the city, you can see ripe oranges are spread down in large piles besides the main road for passersby to buy. The sale of oranges has become a big deal in most Dar es Salaam city suburbs though it has been conducted not in a sanitary way as this photo below can depicts.

In the middle of the market, petty traders are also busy selling their orange products as this is a picking season of the year. This is at the Gongo-La-Mboto municipal market on the outskirts of the city. Oranges are sold at the markets in this manner.

The Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperative seems not to have cared enough for the small scale farmers in the country by leaving them as such without finding a solution to them. One economic analyst once had suggested that, the government should at least build small industries that would provide the market opportunity for orange growers who could take their farm products for processing and earn money. This is one way to help them and as a result the industries would be in a position to manufacture orange juice products. By doing this, the country would lessen the dependence on the imported products into a local market which has now covered almost 98 percent of its market share. But due to lack of knowledge and or may be negligence, farmers continues to suffer in this country. The same thing applies during mango picking seasons as well as pineapple seasons. You would find sellers of these products loitering around with them without having somewhere to take them for sale.

Lack of market for these products has forced petty traders to sell them in an hygienic way as you can see these two petty traders with their oranges spread on the ground near the main road going to Kisarawe district

Because of the little knowledge among the key stakeholders in the country, and coupled with the continued lack of reliable industries in the country, indigenous small farmers in the country continues to experience poverty. Most municipal health workers have tried in vain to prevent petty traders from polluting the environment with orange peels that after the end of their businesses could be seen left scattered around all over the places. This is a shame to the nation which statistics shows that, since independence, the there has never been built a factory which could process orange products into a juicy products in the country

Good natural features not yet exposed

LAKE zone region in Northern part of Tanzania has been blessed with wonderful natural features with attractive greenish scenery that includes landscaping and hilly lands. As you happen to travel along the shores of lake Victoria basin, you might come across these features in some areas mostly small mountains closely to the lake shores.

A small hill like this one here full of stones and little vegetation in it is a typical example of a natural features which can be seen along the shores of the lake Victoria and its environs

I saw one like this and took its photo when I visited the area recently on my way to my in-laws. Such features are an attractions to the people visiting the place. The government can make use of these natural features into advertising tourism potentials in the country

Along the shores of Lake Victoria, fishing is a major economic activity taking place in the area though to some extent agricultural activity is also practiced, fishing still dominates a larger part of the human activities as most youths are engaged with in ordeer to ear their living in these areas. The Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries in the country has been against illegal fishing currently being practiced by few untrustworthy fishermen along the lake shores, and one of the most serious steps it has taken so far in order to curb the escalating habit around, is together with the confiscation of the illegal fish nets which had been prohibited by the government an aspect which has slowed down the development of the fishing industry.

A fishing dhow as it can be seen far in deep waters. Fishermen in lake regions can now communicate in their celtel mobile phones while in their fishing mission even in deep water areas.

In recent years, fishermen in the lake zone had been experiencing a lot of difficulties in communicating each other while in their fishing mission far in deep waters. But Celtel (T) Limited, one of the leading cellular phone companies in the country has upgraded its communication network within the area an aspect which according to fishermen, it had to a greater extent facilitated the communication link by using their mobile phones. The company has improved its communication network in the region, hence fishermen are now happy with the move for they can now communicate with their colleagues even if are in far in the middle of the lake. Unlike before when communication network was not reliable.

Road infrastructure in Mara region has been improved, the main road from Bunda to Tarime that covers approximately 173 kilometers is a well constructed road and motorists have found it comfortable while driving along with their cars, though some do not even care for the danger likely to be caused on the way. The environment of the land in Mara region looks so greenish with small mountains providing a fascinating look of the environment that can be seen from far a distance. This is a tropical type of the land

There are occasional accidents which occurs that involves knocking down livestock As I was driving along the way I found it comfortable and without feeling inconveniences of potholes along the way as it used to be before. But sometimes it is very bad to see that there some motorists who do not obey traffic rules and sign posts placed on the main roads wherever necessary to maintain safety.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Sam Nujoma Road project in quick progress

THE Upgrading of Sam Nujoma Road project in Dar es Salaam city whose construction works started in August 2006 and had encountered a series of postponement, is now expected to end up by September this year. The work is still going on. Tanzania Roads Agency (TANROADS) which was charged with the responsibility for the road’s upgrading on behalf of the Ministry of Infrastructure Development in the country, is doing everything possible to ensure that the project is finished quickly despite of the public outcry on a slow progress of the project. The road is being upgraded by a Chinese construction firm, China Henan International Corporation into a dual carriage way is part of the main urban ring roads in the city of Dar es Salaam that links up the two major trunk roads; the new Bagamoyo Road and the Dar es Salaam-Morogoro Road. The road serves traffic destined to and from various centers such as Mwenge market, the University of Dar es Salaam (Main campus), Mikocheni Industrial area, the Sinza residential area and Ubungo Bus Station.

Contractor’s earth moving machine spreading bitumen on a nearly completed road portion of a 4 km Sam-Nujoma Road at Mwenge in Dar es Salaam.

TANROADS has determined to provide a solution to the unbearable traffic congestion problem currently facing the road and others such as Kilwa road and Nelson Mandela road within the city of Dar es Salaam. The volume of the traffic on the road is so high and according to the traffic counts carried out in 2004; Sam Nujoma road had over 20,000 vehicles passing along in a day.

A modern constructed round about of the nearly completed portion of Sam-Nujoma Road in Dar es Salaam.

Based on this high traffic volume and the poor condition of the road, congestion especially at peak hours in the morning and evenings necessitated the expansion and upgrading of the road. The work involves rehabilitation and widening of 3.95 kilometers of the existing bituminous single carriageway to a dual bituminous carriageway road and is fully funded by the government of Tanzania at an estimated cost of Tshs12.9 billions. The contract for supervision services of Tshs300 million was signed with M/S Norplan A.S in association with NIMETA Consult Ltd.

A completed one side of a road stretch of the Sam-Nujoma Road under rehabilitation. This side goes to Ubungo

Each carriageway would have a width of 7.5m while the service roads will be 3 to 5 meters wide depending on the availability of space. Pedestrian walkways will be 2 meters wide. There will be a provision of about 5 meters for the location of public utilities at the edges of the road reserve. Three types of junctions are provided namely, signalized junctions, priority junctions, and roundabouts. The consultants at the project, the M/S Norplan regularly carries supervision work to ensure that all specifications given for the project are strictly followed. Despite the fact that the construction was anticipated to last a short period, a number of uncontrollable factors including natural ones have made the construction to last longer. The project was supposed to be completed in phases, the first phase being a road portion from Mwenge to the junction of the newly built Mlimani city shopping center. The contractor had to deliver this portion of a 1.5 Km road section by 30th November 2006, but couldn’t do it due to inadequate mobilization of equipment and key staff.

Commuters board a daladala that plies between Mwenge and Ubungo at a bus station along Sam-Nujoma Road which is nearing completion. This spot is close to a famous Full Gospel Bible Fellowship Church.

These key two factors were recently disclosed to have been the major constraints that had slowed down the progress. In the current quarter, the contractor continued mostly with the works in the priority section from Km 3+950 to Km 2+450 construction of Sinza Bridge and the drainage structure. By end of First year the contractor had completed 74 percent of works within the 1.5 Km section which included earthworks construction of cement stabilized sub-base dense bitumen macardam base and kerbs. The design and the composition used in construction of Sam Nujoma road is a mixed up of the normal materials used for road construction.

Traffic jam on one side of the Sam-Nujoma road where vehicles have lined moving on one side only so as to pave way as the construction is going on the other side.

Sam Nujoma Road project has experienced a lot of challenges before and during construction. One of the commonest is the relocation of utilities which includes water pipes, sewerage pipes, telephone cables and electricity power lines which was done by a city based electrical company, Dustan Electrical Engineering Services. The relocation of these utilities took longer than expected partly because the location of some of the services was unknown; this delayed the commencement of the works. The removal of properties located within the road reserve areas took longer than anticipated. This process had to a greater extent interfered with the construction works.