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The Chanzo Morning Briefing – December 16, 2022.

In our briefing today: Older people hardest hit by ongoing food, fuel crisis in Tanzania; Tanzania’s ambassador to Austria dies in a car crash; Over 10 million Tanzanians set to benefit from WB-funded water and hygiene project. 

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Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Thursday, December 15, 2022.

Older people hardest hit by ongoing food, fuel crisis in Tanzania

The food, fuel and finance crisis has had a profoundly negative impact on older people’s well-being in Tanzania, a new policy brief by HelpAge, a non-governmental organisation that supports older people, said Thursday.

According to the NGO, the effects have been more severe in food security and nutrition, the use of energy, the cost of health care, and access to credit. 

“In the absence of a social safety net and additional sources of income, many people are entirely reliant on their families to maintain their livelihoods,” HelpAge reported in its policy brief. 

To alleviate the accelerating poverty amongst older people in Tanzania, the organization says that specific policy and programmatic changes are needed.

Some of the changes that the organisation puts forward include the provision of start-up capital and training for older people on alternative income-generating activities. 

“The Tanzanian government should instruct district councils to allocate two per cent of the existing revolving loan funds for older people to enable their engagement in income-generating activities,” HelpAge suggests.

The organisation also noted that older people’s limited access to credit intensifies individuals’ vulnerability to shocks and reduces their resilience. 

“The government should consider developing a national financial inclusion strategy that provides a road map to providing older people, among other disadvantaged groups, with non-discriminatory access to credit and financial services,” it recommends.

Tanzania’s ambassador to Austria dies in a car crash

Tanzania’s ambassador to Austria, Celestine Mushi, died in a car crash on Thursday while on his way to the Kilimanjaro region.

Tanga District Commissioner Siriel Mchembe confirmed the news yesterday, saying that the envoy was driving solo and died in Tanga en route to Moshi from Dar es Salaam.

Mushi was appointed Tanzania’s ambassador to Austria in January of this year. He presented his credentials to Austria’s president, Alexander van der Bellen, on May 5.

The body of the deceased was taken from the accident scene and preserved at the district hospital’s morgue. His relatives were informed and are on their way to Tanga, from Dar es Salaam.

In her condolence message, President Samia Suluhu Hassan that she received the news of the passing of Mr Mushi with “great sadness.”

“We have lost a competent diplomat and a committed public servant,” President Samia said in a Twitter post. “May God rest his soul in peace.”

Over 10 million Tanzanians set to benefit from WB-funded water and hygiene project

Up to 10 million Tanzanians will gain access to improved water supply and nine million to better sanitation facilities through additional financing approved on Wednesday by the World Bank.

In a statement on Thursday, the international lender said that a new $300 million International Development Association (IDA) credit and a $4.9 million Energy Sector Management Assistance Program (ESMAP) grant for the Sustainable Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Program (SRWSSP) will support the program’s expansion from 86 district councils in 17 regions to 137 district councils in 25 regions of the country. 

It will enable up to 1,850 public primary schools and 2,600 healthcare facilities (HCFs) to be reached with improved sanitation and hygiene facilities, the bank said, adding that the funding will also support a pilot of 206 water schemes that will be built under public-private arrangements.

World Bank Country Director for Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe Nathan Belete said in a statement that the bank is encouraged by the results of the original financing for the program through which more than 3.3 million people were provided with access to improved water supply and significant advancement in sanitation access for households, schools and healthcare facilities.

“These services are boosting human capital and social inclusion as they help to free up women’s time for productive ventures, while also improving student performance,” Mr Belete said in a statement.

According to the World Bank, the original credit of $350 million for the SRWSSP was approved in June 2018, with the objective of increasing access to rural water supply and sanitation services in participating districts and strengthening the capacity of select sector institutions to sustain service delivery. 

Program implementation began in 2019 by supporting the establishment of the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASA), as a specialized rural water services delivery agency, mandated to ensure the sustainability of services, the bank said.

The implementation is led by the Ministry of Water in close coordination with RUWASA, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, the Ministry of Health and the President’s Office–Regional Administration and Local Government.

This is it for today and we hope you enjoyed our briefing. Please consider subscribing to our newsletter (see below) or following us on Twitter (here) or joining us on Telegram (here). And in case you have any questions or comments, please consider dropping a word to our editors at editor@thechanzo.com.

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