Sunday, 17 April 2016

Mugful: This is how you can save dosh

 Dear Mr. President Dr JPM, sir,
            Once again, I’m touching base with you. You’re busy I know but please read this piece; and work on it. Don’t care that it’s written by a boozer.  To quote from Apostle Paul of Tarsus, do what I say but not what I do.
            Sir, since coming to power, you’ve clearly indicated that you want to cleanse the hunk awkwardly rubbished by greed and corruption. Boozers were marooned amidst selfish creatures the corrupt former regimes pointlessly nourished. To emancipate boozers, you purposely and committedly decided to prioritize fiscal discipline, stopping globetrotting correcting tax, curbing graft, and working hard, among others, all aimed at lugging the hunk from inane dependency. To be able to reach your goals, you asked Bongolalanders to help you in whatever way and capacity they’re able to.
            Now that the boils are in your court, boozers, as good citizens of a begging hunk, have some nice and sound proposals arguing that you take some measures. Given that the boozer once lived in Canada when doing his PhD, thinks you’d take a leaf from Canada where only the Prime Minister is entitled to chauffeur-driven car. Remember Kanata is richer than Bongo. Thus, please do the following:
             Make sure that all Ministers, Members of Parliament, Permanent secretaries, Provincial and District Commissioners are learning how to drive. I wonder to see junior official enjoying chauffeur-driven vehicles as if they’re so turgid that they can’t drive by themselves.
                        Sir, essentially, such abuses of public funds results from colonial hangover whereby every who’s who wants to show off power without underscoring that doing so causes a lot of sufferings to the boozers who pick the tab. How can we–over fifty years of being independent–keep on such profligacy that the colonial monsters abandoned many years ago? Most of those addicted to this ill use were born in poor families that’d not even afford a horse or a wain. Who used to drive them before landing such ulaji? Aren’t they the same punks that slept in goatskins?      
            The late father of the nation, Mwl Julius Nyerere knew this too well however he didn’t apply it. He wrote in his book Uongozi Wetu na Hatima ya Tanzania, “Our rulers are normal politicians who like to rule even if they are not able to do so,” (p.14) and one of their symbols is their love of pomp and showoffs. Again, how’s the situation now?
            Sir, let’s anecdotally take a punt at how much dosh Bongo loses monthly, annually and since we got our independence that’s never freed us from dependence and begging simply because we’re ruled by myopic guys. Bongo mainland has 26 regions; thus, it has 26 RCs who also have 26 drivers. If you add the number of Regional Administration Secretaries (RASs) and other heads of departments such as Education, Land, Nonihino and whatnot who also undeservedly enjoy the same privilege, the number swells equivalent to that of the drivers they’re entitled to 156 if you pick just five among many.
            Sir, Bongo has 171 districts with the same numbers of drivers for those cheap bigwigs. Minimally, add just five heads of department just at regional level. The number comes to 826 enjoying chauffeur-driven service undeservedly. Let’s assume that the hunk has 3000 officers entitled to chauffeur-driven vehicles. Add the number of judges, magistrates not to mention the spouses and families of the high and mighty, their cats, nyumba ndogo, dogs and whatnot that enjoy this service countrywide. How much dosh does it burn monthly if every drive receives just Tshs, one million monthly? This means, we’re burning over Tshs. 3,000,000,000 which makes 36,000,000,000 annually.
                        Sir, if you ask anyway why our high and mighty are entitled to such lossmaking privileges while richer hunks like Canada don’t, you’ll be told that they need to be driven so that they can think properly even though doing so has never pulled our hunk from poverty, corruption and beggarliness. Had this been true, professors, boozers, journalists, doctors and pilots would need more of such a service than the mentioned personnel.
            Sir, in sum, boozers recommend that only President, Vice President and Prime Minister should be entitled to chauffeur-driven services. The rest should drive their vehicles; and for those who don’t know how to drive should go to VETA and face the reality. Furthermore, boozers propose other measures all aimed at fiscal discipline. For instance, they think that National Housing houses in the city center should be rent out to government employees instead of businesspeople who’ve mansions but don’t use them in order to save more dosh lost to Dala dalas and much time wasted in traffic jams not to mention pollution. Those interested to know how we can downsize our unnecessary expenses should get a copy of my book AFRICA REUNITE or PERISH (2015) published by Langaa, Cameroon that’s currently used as a text in universities in South Africa and Zimbabwe.
Source:Guardian, April 17, 2016.

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