On December 9, 2023, the Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office (Policy, Parliament, and Coordination) of Tanzania, Jenista Mhagama, made a poignant address to the media in Katesh. The occasion was marked by the receipt of a generous donation of construction materials and medicines, valued at a staggering 70 million Tanzanian shillings, from Multicables Ltd and the Bohora denomination.
Preparedness for Disasters in the Wake of El-Nino
Throughout her address, Mhagama stressed the critical need for regional disaster management committees to be on high alert for rapid response. This urgency is particularly relevant for the 14 regions that the Tanzania Meteorological Authority has forecasted to be hit by El-Nino induced catastrophes. These include floods, landslides, and significant damages to property, human life, and the environment.
Ongoing Efforts and Success Stories
The minister drew attention to the ongoing efforts in Dar es Salaam, where a bridge damaged by flooding is currently under the care and management of the local disaster committee. She also shed light on the situation in Hanang, where victims of a mudslide are being assisted with cleaning efforts and preparations for permanent housing. Mhagama praised these efforts, along with those in other regions such as Kahama, and called for increased vigilance in the Mbeya region.
Natural Water Course Discovery and Water Access Challenges
Adding to the lineup of important topics was the mention of a newly discovered natural water course in the middle of Katesh market. The government plans to assess and address the safety of the area. Despite Tanzania's abundance of water resources, access to clean and safe water remains a daunting challenge for many. A recent announcement made by the Energy and Water Utilities Regulatory Authority (EWURA) of a decrease in fuel prices, adds another layer to this complex issue.
As East Africa continues to grapple with the consequences of climate shocks, including destructive floods linked to the El Nino weather phenomenon, the emphasis on preparedness and adaptation to climate change has never been more crucial. With the right measures in place, Tanzania can brace itself for these challenges and work towards a safer, more resilient future.