‘Tanzanians seem to lack a sense of urgency’

From The Economist:

[The] World Bank now ranks Tanzania a lacklustre 131st in the world, dropping steadily down the league as a place for doing business. Neighbouring Uganda comes in at 112th, with Kenya in 95th place. Well ahead of the region’s big three, at 67th, is little Rwanda, a relatively late aspirant as a serious competitor. Tanzania is the laggard in a poor field. A local brand of socialism first promoted by Tanzania’s founding president, Julius Nyerere, helped give its 44m people a sense of unity but failed to equip them for the 21st century. The country still feels elephantine, its infrastructure is rickety, its electricity patchy, most of its roads unpaved and potholed.

President Jakaya Kikwete knows how it is. On a recent trip he had to change cars twice in a day when they broke down on rutted roads. He used the waiting time to chat to locals. That may help him in elections due in October. He will probably run again for another five-year term. If he does, he is almost certain to win.


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