I recently saw you laying the foundation for M-Pharmacy in conjunction with an Indian investor (Citizen, May 6, 2018). I was overwhelmed and elated though a bit challenged, as I will explain later after congratulating you on such a milestone for yourself and the nation at large. I was elated to note that there are some Tanzanians, particularly indigenous ones, who truly understand President John Magufuli’s drive for the industrialisation of our country. Seeing Mengi donating a building to the Tanzania Women Chamber of Commerce (TWCC) a few months ago (Nipashe, January 31, 2018), I also was as well elated and challenged. First, Tanzania needs many Mengis who can invest in their country and drive their economy instead of letting foreigners to do so as it has been since the country acquired its independence over five decade down the line. We need such people who understand our country’s drive for industrialisation. Again, we need Mengis who are not quacks or swindlers.
Secondly, I urge the government to support such people who are ready to spend their money and time and use their skills to bring about development to their country. Indeed, this shows how Magufuli’s government is pro-investment. Moreover, I think this is an irony to detractors and all who are despising Magufuli’s dream-cum-vision of industrialising Tanzania. So, too, this move will help our country from needless dependence for things we can produce locally.
Apart from helping the country from wasting a lot of Forex importing medications we can produce locally, the said factory is likely to create jobs for our people.
Further, Mengi’s move, apart from being an example for indigenous Tanzanians, will act as a motivation for others to seize whatever opportunities to build and develop their country. Importantly, Mengi’s move shows that if we decide, we can.
Despite all accolades, mzee Mengi, there is a dark side looming over his name that he might or mightn't be unaware of. As I am writing this open congratulatory note, I contributed to two of Mengi's newspapers, the Guardian on Sunday and Nipashe Jumamosi for three years consecutively without being paid even a dime. Our agreement was that I be paid 30,000 per piece that makes the sum I was making to be 240,000 monthly. If you take this amount and multiply by 36 months, you can know how much you owe me. As any human being and citizen, I think, I have the right to be paid so that I can do my part of development of my country and mine the same way you are doing. When I pressed my editors to pay me, they said that things are not well thanks to Magufuli. They didn’t give any understandable explanations provided that currently, whenever somebody wants to avoid paying a loan will tell you the same story of Magufuli as if Magufuli has scooped money from his or her pocket
I don’t know if Mengi knows that there are many contributors facing the same predicament as mine. I wonder how they make end meet, especially for those who hugely depend on writing as their means of living.
Mengi is not alone facing this dark cloud resulting from incompetent employees who do not tell their bosses the truth. The same applies to other media houses. In addition, the same reason offered is Magufuli. For example, I have been contributing to theTanzania Daima for over ten years with two weekly columns. As I am writing, I've already stopped after working without being paid for over three years now. I take this opportunity to address the government as well to see to it that local businesses including media houses are supported. For example, they need adverts from the government that is the biggest advertiser. By supporting the media houses and offering them adverts, they will be able to pay their small workers who are treated like homunculi simply because they have no voice or they are unable to create pompous occasion for the high and the mighty to take note of them. Instead of being treated like no-brainers by concealing their concerns or viewing their demands as hot air or hooey revolving around vainglory and grand standing when they agitate for their rights, the high and mighty should underscore the fact that without such small men and women, their successes would not be realised.
In a nutshell, to ndugu Mengi, please take this challenge and work on it to see to it that your drive for development and justice are practical and far-reaching mainly to those directly connected with your success as it is the case of unpaid contributors to your media empire. It doesn’t add up to create new jobs while those with old jobs are going without being paid.
Thanks once again for showing the way and being ready to help as you did with the TWCC among many you have already helped and supported. Truly, charity begins at home.