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The Chanzo Morning Briefing – July 26, 2023.

In our briefing today: Ruto avoided Samia during a meeting to mediate Kenya’s crisis, Odinga says; Tanga: A sleeping giant off the coast of East Africa?; Canada commits $212m for Tanzania’s health, education, and food security; United States, Zanzibar launch mass mosquito bed net replacement campaign.   

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Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Tuesday, July 25, 2023.

Ruto avoided Samia during a meeting to mediate Kenya’s crisis, Odinga says

President Samia Suluhu Hassan tried to mediate Kenya’s intensifying crisis but did not succeed after the country’s president, William Ruto, avoided the meeting that would involve his opponent, Raila Odinga, the latter claimed Tuesday.

Mr Odinga revealed during a press conference in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi that President Samia spent two nights in the city as she sought to mediate the two people at the centre of the ongoing political crisis in the country but had to call the initiative off as Ruto showed no interest.

“I can now say it here that the President of Tanzania came here two weeks ago, at the invitation of President Ruto to mediate, and she was kept waiting, not from our side. We were available. But the other side was not available. She spent two nights here, and it was all in vain,” Mr Odinga told journalists.

Zuhura Yunus, Tanzania’s Director of Presidential Communication, was not immediately available to confirm whether this happened. The Kenyan presidency has also not commented on the revelation at the time of writing.

Full story here.

Tanga: A sleeping giant off the coast of East Africa?

Writing about Tanga is a subject close to my heart. I trace my ancestry back to the mountains of Usambara seven generations back.

Growing up, I would hear stories from my grandfather about how Tanga was a thriving and bustling region, with Tanga town at the centre of economic activities off the coast. Tanga was the second largest city after Dar es Salaam during Tanganyika’s independence.

Tanga is a port city in Tanzania with over 300,000 people. It is located on the Indian Ocean coast, about 400 kilometres north of Dar es Salaam. The name Tanga means sail in Swahili. It is a major economic hub for the region and is home to several businesses and industries.

The city has for centuries been an influential economic powerhouse for the coastal region of East Africa. The Portuguese established a trading post in Tanga for their East African territory and controlled the area for 200 years between 1500 and 1700.

The Sultanate of Oman then took control of Tanga from the Portuguese by the mid-1700s and consolidated it with Mombasa, Pemba Island and Kilwa. Tanga was a trading port for ivory and the slave trade under the sultan.

Full analysis here.

Canada commits $212m for Tanzania’s health, education, and food security

Canadian Minister of International Development and Minister responsible for the Pacific Economic Development Agency Tuesday completed his five-day visit to Tanzania, announcing funding for $212.75 million in development programmes.

Mr Harjit Sajjan arrived in Tanzania on July 19, 2023, accompanied by Arielle Kayabaga, Member of Parliament (MP) for London West, in Canada.

In a statement, Global Affairs Canada, which manages Canada’s diplomatic and consular relations, said that while in Tanzania, the two visited a health facility in Dodoma supported by Canadian contributions to Tanzania’s Health Basket Fund with Ummy Mwalimu, Minister of Health. 

During the visit, which highlighted the successes and remaining gaps in Tanzania’s health system, Minister Sajjan announced additional funding for the Health Basket Fund. He and MP Kayabaga also observed a youth training session organised by World Vision in Dodoma and discussed with youth educators the health challenges adolescents face regarding sexual and reproductive rights.

Sajjan also met with Adolf Mkenda, Minister of Education, Science and Technology, with whom he announced funding to support access to education and vocational training colleges. 

Minister Sajjan and MP Kayabaga also visited Dundani Secondary School in Mkuranga District to see water, sanitation and hygiene facilities funded by Canada and safe school spaces supported by Canada that enable both girls and boys to learn.

Minister Sajjan and Kayabaga concluded the trip to Tanzania with a walkthrough of a new specialised maternity and newborn hospital supported by Canada. The hospital has improved access to quality health services for underserved populations, including people with disabilities.

You can read more about projects Canada supports in Tanzania and the funding its government has committed for those projects here.

United States, Zanzibar launch mass mosquito bed net replacement campaign

The United States and Zanzibar have launched the Usingizi Bul Bul (‘A Restful Night’s Sleep’) campaign that will distribute approximately 248,000 insecticide-treated nets across 53 shehias in Zanzibar, marking a significant leap forward in the fight against malaria, a press release said Tuesday. 

The remaining Shehias in Zanzibar will receive the nets in 2024.

With funding from the United States President’s Malaria Initiative (PMI), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) partnered with the Zanzibar Malaria Elimination Program (ZAMEP) through its project Breakthrough ACTION to design the campaign. 

The campaign focuses on ensuring households are registering for insecticide-treated nets, ensuring households are collecting them, and ensuring people in homes are sleeping under them.

“This campaign showcases our commitment to collaboration and the utilisation of cutting-edge approaches,” Zanzibar Minister of Health Nassor Ahmed Mazrui said. 

“We express our gratitude to USAID and partners for their invaluable contributions. Together, we are confident that this collective effort will lead us closer to a malaria-free Zanzibar,” he added.

Acting USAID/Tanzania Health Office Director Anna Hoffman said that the campaign embodies our dedication to malaria elimination in Zanzibar. 

“The United States remains committed to helping move toward a malaria-free future in Zanzibar, and we urge Zanzibaris to ensure they receive their [insecticide-treated nets] and sleep under them every night for ‘Usingizi Bul Bul,’” she said.

In a press release, USAID said that for the first time in Zanzibar, a state-of-the-art digital registration and issuance system has been introduced to help people register their households and easily receive insecticide-treated nets. 

USAID- funded Digital Square project, a global partnership initiative that coordinates investments into smart, scalable health technology solutions, to design a system that makes insecticide-treated nets more accessible, reduces delays in distribution and ensures that more people benefit from them.

New research in Zanzibar shows that while people are less worried about getting malaria, barriers such as discomfort, difficulty breathing, and itching/rashes still hinder consistent insecticide-treated nets usage, USAID said. 

The agency added that social and behaviour change initiatives, such as the Usingizi Bul Bul campaign, are key in addressing these challenges and bringing about significant, long-term, positive community changes.

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

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One Response

  1. Dear Chanzo.
    (This is unrelated to today’s post).

    On 31st MAY, Government Chief Spokesman Gerson Msigwa promised that the ‘first test run’ of the SGR Phase 1 between Dar and Morogoro would take place before the end of July. I hope you will be knocking on the spokesman’s door asking why he makes wild promises that he can’t keep.

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