Big results now: what is new in it?

It has been a tendency for our politicians to squander the public resources unquestioned. And at times it is believed that what belongs to all belongs to nobody that is to say public resources have no owners.

Since the time Mwalimu Nyerere left the office at the state house, it has been recorded that Tanzania fell to the group of countries that have terrific records of grand corruption in different sectors of which the mineral and energy sectors have been the leading ones on corruption scams.

The worst thing every corrupt deed in Tanzania has been given some justification by the authorities through either enactment of laws as it had been with the privatisation processes where uncountable corruption stories have been recorded.

All these came with political slogans to bless and justify the situations. Corruption has demoralised the patriotic spirit that had existed in the minds and hearts of Tanzanians for a long period of time.

The fourth regime of Tanzania on its coming to power in 2005 was thought to be the Messiah to redeem the nation and take it to the promisedland.

It is undeniable that the present President with the use of abbreviation JK as it was with the case of Mwalimu Nyerere (JK) people had put big trust on the initials  believing that JKs would be the hope for the citizens.

That is why it’s no wonder that the current President won with more than 80% of all the votes in the 2005 general election, the motto to portray the vigour and enthusiasm to serve the citizens of this nation was “Kasi Mpya, Ari Mpya na Nguvu Mpya”.

It is during this regime that peasants of this country thought that it was their turn to eat the fruits of the independence.

During this period the government promised to give subsidies to the peasants in order to boost their production and raise their standards of living.

It was the time of hope the sector that had been undervalued from the time when the Mwalimu Nyerere’s administration left the office. The slogan “Kilimo kwanza” was the talk of the day among the underfed peasants and the overfed politicians.

The government promised the peasants that it was going to facilitate the mechanisation of agricultural sector to make it more productive and competitive.

The aim said was to attract the youth accept that agriculture would be one of the sectors to provide employment and reduce the number of the youths who stay idle in the streets.

At this particular time the government invited opportunists to enjoy the national cake to facilitate the supply of agricultural implements.

Some took tender to supply fertilisers and others to supply the tractors and the spare parts. The government provided tax exemption on the importation of the required implements to boost agricultural production, I dare say it was another grace to the businessmen in the country to benefit in the name of supporting agriculture in the country, and the truth remains that peasants remained as the victims of the situation.

With the story of “Kilimo Kwanza” we all heard how corruption is rampant in the so called “mbolea ya ruzuku”, a deal that businessmen in fact the big potatoes of the country who at times are the government officials cum businessmen have taken a lion’s share in the supply of fertilisers and the tractors to the peasants.

Biblically it is believed that “a servant cannot serve two masters” at the same time. Most of our politicians are businessmen, the political decisions they make have conflicting interests with the public interests.

Public interests have always been sacrificed on the altar of government officials cum businessmen and the citizens have continued to be the victims of the conflict.

And now we have fallen in another story of the “Big Results Now” (BRN). The question to ask what is new in the current slogan BRN? Also, to who are those Big Results Now directed? I heard that senior government officials have signed a deal of big salaries on oaths to facilitate the BRN. When I heard of that story, my mind switched the story to the stories of Kilimo Kwanza.

What is vivid to me right now, I believe that there are times that the government has huge funds somewhere which have never been used and it is not clear how those funds can be spent. That being the case, big potatoes decide to come with an “action plan” to take the share they think they deserve for their own interests.

For quite a long time now Tanzania has been misallocating resources under the name of development projects.

The funds that the government sings that is meant for development activities have been ending up in administrative capacities rather than in the implementation of the forethought projects.

Think of the agricultural funds, water funds, and education funds just to mention a few. The funds are spent of buying posh cars used by the administrators while those at the grassroots who had to work in implementing the thought projects toil in severe situations in such a way that they fail to meet the intended objectives.

Look at the said big results now, administrators have taken oaths to supervise the toilers who starve to death in advancing the interests of the politicians. I believe BRN is just a story to facilitate the eating of public funds by the big potatoes just as it was in other programmes.

Under the current situation, in whatever sector the government dreams to achieve BRN is doomed to failure even before the projects started; this is due to the factual truth that, people who had to implement and produce the Big Results Now are desperate and under motivated.

By Stanislaus Kigosi

Stanislaus is a teacher at Nyumbu Secondary School in Tanzania, holding a B.A. Ed (Hons) UDSM, PGD Economic Diplomacy (CFR) and currently pursuing the LLB degree at the Open University of Tanzania

9 Comments

  1. Rashid Hussein Mwungu says:

    BRN implementation since its adoption made the realization of how Tanzania government works out of research. No participation of key stakeholders who are the main implementors. The beneficiaries opinion have no chance. In fact I believe, if the government will not be able to restructure the governing system and bring back the lost illusion of the citizens, let the civil servants play their role in any development projects and policies, the country will remain dark. The only way is to let the organs work accordingly. Let the politicians not interfere the professional work. The question is, do we still have BRN? What worsening is absence of patriotism to the government officials and project mania to the government.

  2. Sospeter Langiboli says:

    “Big results now”has remained as a non sense notion by most of the former high state officials as it caused huge mistrust to the existed government.People were promised and in turn those who promised them were now using the government post they had to benefit on their own.I hate hearing more about BRN.

  3. BERNADETHA MARIKI says:

    Tanzania Big Result Now Initiative can only be successfully if the following challenges are well handled and overcome.
    • Budget alignment and resource mobilisation
    • Procurement
    • Regulatory Permits
    • Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA)
    • FDA Permits
    • TBS Certificates
    • Legal and Court Processes
    However, the other major impediment to success of the BRN initiative has been with us much longer: grand corruption, malfeasance, misfeasance and other maladies generally involving public resources in one form or another.
    You can not expect a lot from BRN,it will just come and go,like other slogans.

  4. Asante Swai says:

    what are the Three trees that are; Problems,identifying the issues and develop solutions in Key Performance Indicator in Finance Dept

  5. Ashraf Khan says:

    Last line auto spell error.

    ‘BRN says “for the branded non conformers, it is time to go out, and let real conformers take the reigns”

  6. Ashraf Khan says:

    BRN is about change of mind sets and the way we do our day to day activities. BRN is about transparency in a performance based system. The Citizens of Tanzania are the assessors of the BRN. It is about usual verses the unusual. It is about asking ourselves, why can they do it while we fail to achieve it? BRN is about desiring and making it to the top and managing to remain at the top. It is to striving for nothing less than the top.
    BRN is about accepting our shortcomings and reshaping our future by taking ownership of how we do what we have to do on our daily business, be it learning at schools, offloading a truck, pursuing a degree, operating a patient, registering a complaint at a police station, debating a motion in parliament, reporting a case history, driving a bus full of passengers, riding a bodadoda, nursing a patient, judging a land case, learning and undersanding a required change, charting a design and constructing a power plant in a record time yet economically, it is about optimizing local enterprenuership, about dreaming and realising of the impossible, say what you may, it is all about doing things in the best possible way, and above all it is about change.

    We have been humiliated for a long time in terms of a non performer and non compliant Nation to the eventual detriment of a suffering nation and it s citizens, especially the vulnerables. We should all say no more by understanding the requirement of change.

    However, all of the above needs to be well taken by the class that is on the wheels, either the Civil Servants as the leaders have to embarrass and affect the changes first in their mindsets, than in the methods of how they do their daily job and thereafter for the stakeholders to be fully committed in implementation. How? Preparation and Training the implementors on how to do things the BRN way cause BRN is business unusual, while we are all used to do business as usual. Either it is from business as usual to business unusual. Yes we have to business unusual if we are to gain the loss time in development on comparison to other nations including our closest neighbour Kenya.

    Yes we can if, and if only we do not repeat the mistakes done in the past. How? For the leaders to accept that we need the change and for the citizens to understand what good the change can do for us and how we should all go about supporting the movement. Yes BRN is. Movement for change.
    In life we all have to first learn, then understand, than do it. The BRN philosophy may have come from The Malaysian success model, so did many other good things like technology and so forth. One must accept the fact that very few can make advancement and success without external challenges or support.
    BRN is right for Change, Why? BRN says for the branded non performers, it is time to go out, and let real performers take the reigns.

  7. big results now would remain history if we are not committed to implementation

  8. EMMANUEL J JOHN says:

    It is true that implementation of big result now initiative will make poverty history in Tanzania country, due to the following reasons.
    .Agriculture, Food and Nutrition, Agriculture is the mainstay of the economy. It employs about 80% of the work force and accounts for over 50% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at factor cost and over 50% of foreign exchange earnings. It is also the major source of food supply and raw material for the industrial sector. Furthermore it provides the market for industrial products. The major export cash crops are cotton and coffee. through improving agriculture sector we will be able solve the problems of communities by solve the problems of food and nutrition, the policy shall aim at mitigating the burden of rural woman who play a major role in providing the basic family needs, ensuring food security for the nation, and expanding nutrition education. Therefore, various ministries, departments and organizations will have the following responsibilities of promotion of the use of better farm implements as well as techniques and practices of modern farming, Improving storage, processing and the distribution of food crops produced at the household, community and national level as recommended in BRN policy, paying special attention to the needs of children, pregnant women and lactating mothers as well as providing systematic education on food and nutrition, hence through that BRN policy will make poverty history in Tanzania country
    Development project, through adoption of BRN policy Tanzania government started to implement development project which will bring about community development for instances BRN focuses on the construction of seven new power plants that would generate 1310MW of electricity the building of 3000km of high voltage lines and enhancement of distribution by establishing 590,000 new connections that would provide more than five million people with access to electricity hence reduction of absolute poverty in Tanzania as recommended also in MKUKUTA II.
    Participatory development plans, through implementation of BRN policy the issue of participatory plans for development tasks is considered as important so as to bring about rapid change as appreciated by his Excellency Hon. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete “Development plans are no longer secret matters for the executives the public will be involved to learn about the development plans by sharing their views accordingly,” President Kikwete had said this means that BRN concept needs every person, officer, worker, public institution in this country to work hard in order to deliver the expected goals by fulfilling the national six areas of priorities set by the government, hence community benefit and build the kind we feeling attitude towards their development project hence poverty reduction.
    Good utilization of resources (INPUTS), through BRN policy now there will be increased output simply because inputs where utilized in such a way that will deliver outputs for instance efficiency and effectiveness of agricultural production at the village level timely delivery and efficient use of energy inputs into agriculture increase in use of tractors and/or animal-drawn implements for farming; introduction of village-level transport and the use of small scale human or draught-animal-powered technologies; use of renewable energy resources; and introduction of improved efficiency barns for curing tobacco, drying tea, and smoking fish to reduce the use of wood fuel hence community development
    The use of private public partnership (PPP) these refer to a business relationship between a private-sector company and a government agency for the purpose of completing a project that will serve the public. Public-private partnerships can be used to finance, build and operate projects such as agriculture transportation networks, parks and convention centers. Financing a project through a public-private partnership can allow a project to be completed sooner or make it a possibility in the first place. For instance the strengthen of our cooperation with the private sector in agriculture the private sector the country can get food secured and that the focus now is to make sure that proper value addition was done. the private sector can team up with the public one in realizing the government’s Big Results Now in agriculture projects hence poverty reduction

  9. Francis Sampa says:

    The writer has given a good narrative on how public officials in the Tanzania government squander resources that are meant to benefit the people at the grass-root level and bring about development as in the case of Kilimo Kwanza subsidies.

    However as many critics of the Big Results Now initiative he has failed to give a balanced analysis of BRN, why it came in place, it merits, how it is implemented and much worse it’s link to Kilimo Kwanza, BRN is not a Kilimo Kwanza replacement but rather a complimentary initiative in a broader perspective. BRN is a catalyst to implementing development plans, including Kilimo Kwanza.

    The BRN model copied from Malaysia is also used in Rwanda and Nigeria to fast track implementation of development plans (where kilimo kwanza features) by helping the government to clearly prioritize and focus its actions towards achieving the intended results throughout the government machinery (from Ikulu all the way to Tandahimba local authorities). you all know that the problem is not that Tanzania does not have good policies but implementation of those policies from the central government down to the local government, and that is what the BRN is there to address and this is not a pilot project, it’s is a tested model that has worked in Malaysia, Rwanda and Nigeria as well, countries that share a similar development path.

    Let me also remind ourselves that BRN is not there to address all the development challenges that face Tanzania, but it is indeed a good start that can can be improved to deliver more results and should be complemented by other initiatives, private sector involvement.

    Hence before we start demonizing BRN let embrace the fact that it is a good start to get result oriented (less politicized) mindsets in implementing development plans and let’s build from there before we find ourselves in the wrong side of history, the world and much more our neighbors are moving fast why the heck should we wait.

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