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April 2020
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Africa Is Open For Business Not Exploitation

Africa is open for business not exploitation. Whenever I hear of an African country giving land away to China or any other nation to develop and then weigh it up against the returns, my mind fails to comprehend why we keep short-changing ourselves. The stark difference between the two CNN stories below is alarming one level and on the other promising. Alarming because Dawanau market is trading despite the lack of basic infrastructure like good roads, which would definitely boost trade and make life more practical and somewhat easier for the traders and customers who visit the market.  The Tanzania story has motives, trade quality among many other factors to consider, written all over it.

Now, you go from watching and listening to the different players in the clip above to the one below and you have to wonder what is going on? I agree with Aloyce Masanja that the land should not be left idle but, there is a but. His dream of a win, win situation is yet to materialise and until that happens, I would not let my guard down. The owners of the land should also be compensated for the use of their land. I have no idea why they were not farming on it and I am not a big proponent of giving the land to outsiders to farm or use for whatever purpose the land in their own countries cannot fulfill. Instead, train and teach the local people as to how best to use their arable farmland. At the end of the day, they will be contributing to the economy of Tanzania or any nation that opts for a scheme like this. Let’s use our land and trade within ourselves and with the outside world. For crying out loud, if you can bring in the South Koreans to farm, you can also bring in organisations to  educate the owner of the land about the best methods of farming that will yield great interest or didn’t someone think of that? Yes, I know we need development in Africa but for how long are we going to wait for the ‘New kids on the block,’ China, South Korea and other nations  from the Asia continent and who can forget the the old boys  network from Western hemisphere, to come and develop our backyard for us?

I sincerely hope he got a good deal for the people of Tanzania.


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