Tanzania’s President John Magufuli has called off celebrations to mark Union Day as part of his cost-cutting efforts, telling people to go about their businesses on that day.
According to the statement by the president’s office.
“People should cerebrate this day at home or continue with their personal business.”
He added that the money government had mapped out for the celebrations should be spent on building and refurbishing the roads in Mwanza in north-western Tanzania.
In Tanzania, Union Day is usually marked on 26 April and the event is done to remember the formation of Tanzania in 1964 after Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged together to form one country.
This isn’t the first time the president had cancelled a popular and remarkable event such as this, in a quest to cut-down on unnecessary expenses while developing the country.
Last year, Mr Magufuli dropped celebrations to mark 54 years the country gained independence from the UK. He rather declared that day a clean-day and even led a clean-up campaign.
The idea of the strict president who have even banned the wearing of mini-skirt could be justified as Tanzania recently lost ‘$470m’ from aid cut after US aid agency, the Millenium Challenge Corporation (MCC), revealed it would back out from the new aid agreement, which was due to be signed this year.
MCC said the deal would have offered $470m to the ‘power sector, including investments in infrastructure and also aid in the policy, regulatory and institutional reforms of Tanzanian government website states.
A former five-year deal, which was endorsed in 2008, made $700m available to the country in financial support to improve energy, water and transport infrastructure.
Several other aid agencies also followed suit and dumped extending a helping hand to the country, making the president to urge his people to work even harder.
The son of a peasant farmer, John Pombe Magufuli, who won the election to become Tanzania’s next president on his 56th birthday, urged his country to make do with whatever the country resources are, insisting they will not fall because international aid agencies have ditched them.