Sunday, June 29, 2014 

Buildings activist puts case for employing young people

DAR ES SALAAM - The Tanzania government was recently accused of hurting the earning power of young people due to a campaign of destroying colonial structures.

Speaking in Dar es Salaam, the Executive Director for the Foundation of Civil Society John Uranga said the governments’ trend of demolishing old and colonial buildings was not only denying government revenues, but also leaving the majority of youth without jobs.

Uranga said, Dar es salaam, and other city’s old and colonial structures were a great attraction to foreign tourists.

He said if these are preserved then this can lead to in-come generation as well as creating job opportunities for the majority city youth.

He said what Tanzania needed, is to ensure that the old buildings in the major cities of Dar es salaam, Mwanza and other cities are preserved for the future generation as well as becoming a source for job opportunity.

 “As we plan for mega-cities, we need to protect the country’s treasures that later creates employment to the majority of city youth,” Ulanga said.

He said buildings like Nyumba ya sanaa and salamander which were located at the heart of Dar es salaam city have all been demolished paving way for the construction of  high rise buildings.

He said, “In the few coming days, we will see old forodhani building which house the Court of Appeals being pulled down, because it is no longer gazetted as a protected building.”

According to the UN Habitat report of 2010, Dar es Salaam city is among the top 10 fastest growing cities in Africa. This has created demand for real estate especially with the influx of rural population to the city.

According to the 5th World Bank, Tanzania economic update that was launched last week, Dar es Salaam population is expected to triple by 2030 to over 10million people from the current population record of 4 million according to 2012 population census, continuing to create a need for housing development.

The Director at the Center for the Study of African Economies, at Oxford University, Prof. Paul Collier said Tanzania has a vast land that is yet to be developed.

Prof. Collier said much as the country’s population and development is concerned, there was a possibility of developing the vast undeveloped areas while maintaining the city’s history for future generation.

“Only a third of Dar es salaam city area have been built.There is still a vast coastal potential area that hasn’t been developed yet and the real sector should see this as an opportunity and develop such areas which will lead to huge employment opportunity” Prof Collier said.

Paul Collier is also Professor of Economics and Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government. He is currently Advisor to the Strategy and Policy Department of the IMF, advisor to the Africa Region of the World Bank; and he has advised the British Government on its recent White Paper on economic development policy.

By Kenan Kalagho, Sunday, June 29th, 2014