Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Monday, February 13, 2023.
World Bank: Universal access to water supply, sanitation, and hygiene could reduce Tanzania’s economic losses by $1.9 billion per year by 2030
A new World Bank report shows that providing universal access to water supply, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) could reduce Tanzania’s economic losses by $1.9 billion per year by 2030, and the country could potentially generate more than $2.4 billion each year in savings on excess medical costs and lost productivity due to inadequate access.
The just published 18th edition of the Tanzania Economic Update: Clean Water, Bright Future: The Transformative Impact of Investing in WASH shows that while the country has made significant progress in recent years in improving access to WASH services, only 61 per cent of households have access to basic water supply, 32 per cent to basic sanitation, and 48 per cent to basic hygiene (per the Sustainable Development Goals’ definitions).
More than nine per cent of the population continues to practice open defecation which entails serious health risks. In addition, rural areas lag behind urban centres in all dimensions of WASH.
Nathan Belete, World Bank Country Director, said for Tanzania to ensure universal WASH access, a considerable upfront investment is required to avoid the devastating consequences of inadequate services.
“Achieving WASH goals can support the jobs agenda while mitigating the adverse effects on workforce productivity and advance Tanzania’s objectives for inclusive growth and poverty reduction,” he said during the launch of the report.
According to the World Bank, death and disease are the most immediate consequences of inadequate WASH services– being responsible for 31,000 deaths (10 per cent of preventable deaths) — and cost the economy more than $2.4 billion each year in excess medical costs and lost productivity.
The heaviest toll is being borne by women, children, and the poor and vulnerable. For example, WASH-related illnesses lessen the educational attainment of students and impair the cognitive development of children, the international lender noted.
To achieve and sustain universal WASH access, the report recommends a combination of policy measures, institutional capacity building, and new financial arrangements at the national, subnational, and community levels.
It calls for prioritizing the cross-cutting impact of WASH on the government’s larger policy agenda and urges policymakers across sectors to advocate for WASH investments and develop collaborative solutions to address their shared challenges.
Ruth Kennedy-Walker, World Bank Senior Water Supply and Sanitation Specialist and report co-author, said that the implementation of Tanzania’s third Water Sector Development Program (WSDP) requires an estimated $6.5 billion in total.
“On the other hand, providing near-universal WASH access would cost the government just $16 per capita per year, which is less than half the $38 per capita that inadequate WASH services cost Tanzania each year,” she said. “The WSDP-3 implementation therefore would generate benefits equal to its initial investment of $4.1 billion, for WASH-related activities under the program, within five years.”
On the overall economy, the 18th Tanzania Economic Update shows that strong macro fundamentals allowed Tanzania to emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic in good shape, though economic recovery has been relatively modest due to strong headwinds created by the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine, tightening global financial conditions, and global economic slowdown.
For 2022, GDP growth was 4.6 per cent, marginally higher than the 4.3 per cent growth in 2021, the update shows. The economic recovery in 2022 nevertheless remains broad-based with most sectors rebounding to pre-COVID activity levels.
Headline inflation continued to edge up during 2022 as a result of rising international commodity prices and severe drought, reaching 4.2 per cent in the first nine months of 2022 compared to 3.5 per cent in the same period the previous year. This is concerning as food makes up about thirty per cent of the consumer price basket, the update notes.
The pandemic caused an increase in the poverty rate, from 26.2 per cent in 2019 to 27 per cent in 2021, with only a minor reduction in the overall poverty rate anticipated in 2022. The report noted that reversing this pandemic effect could prove challenging amidst considerable development and reform challenges that have been exacerbated by the pandemic shock and spillovers from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The report highlights that strengthening the country’s capacity to build resilience, supporting productivity-enhancing private sector-led inclusive growth, attracting new foreign and domestic investment, and expanding fiscal space while maintaining debt sustainability remain key priority reforms over the short- and medium-term.
Tanzania bans 16 books for endangering the upbringing of children in the country
The Minister of Education, Science and Technology Professor Adolf Mkenda has announced the banning of 16 books for endangering the upbringing of children and young people in the country.
“I am banning the following books from being used in schools and all educational institutions because these books are in contrast with Tanzanian traditions, customs, and culture and endanger the quality education of our children and young people,” explained Professor Mkenda.
The banned books include Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Diary of a Wimpy Kid-Rodrick Rules, Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Last Straw, and Diary of a Wimpy Kid-Dog Days.
Other books are Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Ugly Truth, Diary of a Wimpy Kid –Cabin Fever, Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Third Wheel , Diary of a Wimpy Kid-Hard Luck,Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Long Haul,Diary of a Wimpy Kid –Old School,Diary of a Wimpy Kid-Double Down.
Also Diary of a Wimpy Kid-The Getaway , Diary of a Wimpy Kid-Diper Overlode, Is for Transgender (you know best who you are),Is for LGBTQIA (find the words that make you) and Sex Education a Guide to Life.
Recently there has been a surge of messages on social platforms that push the government to check on school curricula and ban books that are not proper to Tanzania’s children. The concerns were heightened with the report that there is a school in Kilimanjaro that encourage young boys to commit sodomy among themselves.
Mkenda explained that those books are banned in public schools and private schools and all educational institutions in the country. Mkenda has also asked parents and guardians to provide information through the Ministry’s special numbers 0262160270 and 0737962965 when they come across any books that are in contrast with a good Tanzanian upbringing.
Arbitration commences in Washington as Canadian mining company sues Tanzania
Canadian-based minerals exploration company Winshear Gold Corp. on Monday provided an update on its case against the government of Tanzania over the decision by the latter to cancel the licenses of the former which was operating the SMP Gold Project.
In its update, Winshear Gold Corp., formerly known as Helio Resource Corp., said that the evidentiary hearing commenced on Monday in Washington D.C., where a three-person tribunal panel is presiding over the court hearings, which are expected to conclude on or before the close of business on Friday, February 17, 2023.
Winshear’s licenses were cancelled immediately after the government amended the Mining Act 2010 whose regulations subsequently cancelled all Retention Licences at which point they ceased to have any legal effect.
The government has removed Winshear’s ownership of the SMP Project, something that the company says by doing so Tanzania has breached its obligations to Winshear under the Canadian-Tanzania BIT and international law.
Some of these include Tanzania’s obligation not to nationalise or expropriate the company’s investments or subject them to measures having an effect equivalent to nationalisation or expropriation without prompt, adequate and effective compensation under the BIT.
Another is Tanzania’s obligation to accord fair and equitable treatment and full protection and security to the company’s investment and not to impair by unreasonable or discriminatory measures the maintenance, use, enjoyment or disposal of the company’s investment under the BIT.
The International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) Convention has been ratified by 158 States, including Tanzania. An award issued by an ICSID tribunal is enforceable in any one of those 158 member States as if it were a judgment of one of their own courts.
Activists rescue Kenya’s schoolboy who was trafficked to Tanzania
Human rights activists in Kenya have rescued a primary school pupil who had been trafficked to Tanzania to work as a farmhand, the country’s The Standard newspaper reported on Tuesday.
The Standard Seven student at Mwakingali Primary School in Kenya was rescued by officials from the Taita-Taveta Human Rights Watch, the paper reported.
Mr Haji Mwakio, the chairman of the Taita-Taveta Rights Watch, told The Standard newspaper that they acted on a tip-off and traced the boy working as a farmhand at Marerani in Arusha, Tanzania.
He said the victim disappeared from home in Voi town when schools closed and did not report back to school when they reopened on January 23, prompting the search.
“The boy is now back to school under the care of the children’s department. We thank the immigration officials from Kenya and Tanzania for assisting us,” the paper quoted Mwakio as saying.
The human rights activist noted human trafficking victims found in Taveta also include young girls lured by truck drivers into sexual relationships.
Tanzania invites investors to the Tanzania Mining and Investment Forum 2023
Tanzania is organising a new edition of the Tanzania Mining & Investment Forum that will be hosted in Dar ss Salaam from October 25 to October 26, 2023, at the Julius Nyerere International Convention Centre, a statement released on Monday stated.
The mining sector’s contribution to Tanzania’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has been increasing yearly, the statement noted. In the year 2020/2021, the mineral sector’s contribution to GDP rose to 7.2 per cent from 6.7 per cent in 2019/2020, making the sector the economy’s leading foreign exchange earner.
Taking place under the theme ‘Unlocking Tanzania’s Future Mining Potential,’ the Tanzania Mining & Investment Forum 2023 will once again connect the Tanzanian, African, and global mining community with global Ministers, CEOs, policymakers and industry leaders in Dar es Salaam to meet in person and discuss cooperation strategies to unlock and advance the opportunities for development in this vital sector.
The forum, organised jointly with dmg events and Ocean Business Partners, is expected to attract over 2,000 global attendees from over 25 countries, will include a world-class conference with over 100 speakers, with more than 20 sessions, keynote addresses and presentations which will run alongside a large-scale technology and innovation exhibition, the statement noted.
This year’s forum will have a strong focus on global mining investments, including new projects and partnerships, technologies, regulations and financing. In addition, new topical subjects such as environmental, social and governance policies, strategic mineral developments, sustainable mining, and local content will also be at the centre of the discussion.
Minister for Minerals Doto Biteko urged mining stakeholders around the globe to participate in the forum, inviting them to the “ground-breaking announcements, hosting bilateral and investor meetings, showcasing project development opportunities and working with our national and global partners to unlock the full potential of Tanzania’s mining sector.”
Over the past three editions the Tanzania Mining & Investment Forum has attracted over 4,500 global attendees with participation from over 15 countries, included a world-class conference alongside a technology showcase exhibition, and the award ceremony for mining companies and individuals who have excelled in various aspects of their activities via the Madini Gala Night.
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