STATEMENT BY H.E. JAKAYA MRISHO KIKWETE, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED REPUBLIC OF TANZANIA, DURING JOINT PRESS CONFERENCE WITH HON HILARY RODHAM CLINTON UNITED STATES SECRETARY OF STATE, DAR ES SALAAM, TANZANIA, 13 JUNE 2011.
Madam Secretary of State,
Let me begin by once again, saying how happy we are to welcome you to Tanzania. We are gratified and feel deeply honoured that you included Tanzania in your itinerary in Africa. Your visit speaks volumes about the state of our bilateral relations. In many ways the exchange of visits by officials of our two countries has contributed immensely to the development and consolidation of our relations. Tanzania and I have fond memories of the visit to Tanzania by former President George W. Bush and my three visits to the White House: two during President Bush’s time and one during President Barrack Obama’s administration. Tanzanians are now anxiously awaiting visit by President Obama. If he chooses to visit us, I promise that it will be the visit of a lifetime.
Our countries have benefitted from our bilateral cooperation. Tanzania has received a lot of invaluable support from the US which has complemented our development efforts and continues to make a difference in improving the lives of Tanzanians. The list is long but let me mention few things.
In the health sector, through the support of the US Government thousands of Tanzanians, including women and children who would have died of diseases such as malaria, HIV/AIDS and TB are alive today. Thanks to the President’s Malaria Initiative, PEPFAR and other programmes. Through US support, deaths from malaria have been reduced by half from 120,000 deaths per annum to between 60,000 and 80,000 and malaria has almost been eliminated in Zanzibar. In the past, 40 per cent of outpatients in our hospitals used to be those suffering from malaria, today its only 20 percent. The gains made in reduction of under-five mortality rate mortality is very much a function of malaria and HIV/AIDS.
With the support of the US government through PEPFAR over 13 million Tanzanians have been counseled and voluntarily tested for HIV. Infection rate has declined from 18 per cent in the mid 1990s to 5.4 per cent to date. Those infected can now get the requisite care and treatment. Pregnant mothers who are HIV positive can now deliver children who are HIV free.
In education, let me thank President Barak Obama and you, Madame Secretary of State for delivering on two of my request I made when we met in Washington in May, 2009. I am pleased that we are getting science and mathematics teachers among the Peace Corps coming to Tanzania.
I am also grateful for the support in printing of science and mathematics text books for our secondary schools. We have already received 800,000 textbooks which have been distributed and 923 schools have benefited. Another 1,425,000 books are on the way. The availability of these textbooks plus support for teacher training will significantly reduce the shortage of books and go a long way towards improving the quality of education in Tanzania.
Millennium Challenge Account:
Through the Millennium Challenge Account a number of important roads are being built, water and electricity supply is being improved in Tanzania. When completed, these projects will benefit close to 8 million Tanzanians.
Counter Terrorism, Counter Narcotics and Piracy
Our two countries have been working together closely in the fight against terrorism, narcotics and piracy. We thank the US government for assisting our security organs in building capacity in this fight. There are tangible results. Tanzania has become a difficult place for perpetrators of these crimes to operate. We have apprehended a number of them and brought them to justice. I am pleased that you have agreed to continue cooperating in this area.
Money Well Spent:
Let me assure you Madam Secretary, United States tax payers money is well spent and is bearing the desired results of improving the living conditions of the people of Tanzania.
We thank the US government for including Tanzania in two recent development initiatives of the Obama Administration: the US Partnership for Growth and Feed the Future Programme. This will enhance Tanzania’s capacity for comprehensive growth and ensure food security and nutrition for our people as well as the neighboring countries that depend on Tanzania as their source of food.
Cooperation on Regional and International issues
Tanzania and the US see eye to eye on a number of regional and international issues. We appreciate US leadership on global issues and promise to continue to work together for peace and development in Africa and the world. Once again let me welcome you and the members of your delegation to Dar-es-Salaam!
Now, I am passing the floor to you with pleasure.Email This
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