Dar es Salaam. When ‘Loliondo’ is mentioned what comes to mind is a ward in Ngorongoro District where Pastor Ambilikile Mwasapile dispensed his “magical medicine” at only Sh500 per cup.
But, the Loliondo I refer to is a market in Kibaha, Coast Region, which is popular with roast goat meat, or in Kiswahili, “mbuzi choma”.
On Saturdays, thousands of Dar es Salaam and Kibaha residents flock there to savour mbuzi choma to reduce stress.
Not only goats are slaughtered there, but also chickens, ducks and sheep. Large amounts of beer and soft drinks are also consumed. The fare from Mbezi-Mwisho to Loliondo is only Sh600.
There are several similar places in Tanzania. They include Msalato in Dodoma and KwaMromboo in Arusha. But these places are different from Loliondo as the KwaMromboo market is open daily. Msalato is famous for meat consumption and the business is done on Saturdays.
Meat cheap, abundant
At Msalato, the price of goat meat is very cheap. When you arrive there at the first time, your choice may be difficult as every stove sells good meat.
The place is clean. All goats are examined and stamped before they are slaughtered.
Those who do not like goat or sheep meat can eat chicken and duck meat.
While you are at Loliondo and suddenly you run out of money and still want to continue enjoying the weekend, don’t panic. A number of mobile money agents are there. They walk from one table to another to ensure customers do not miss their services.
At Loliondo, everything is an opportunity of earning money. Usually in other areas when you order grilled meat pepper and lemon are parts of the service, but in Loliondo it is different.
“At Loliondo, chilli and lemon are sold separately and we get money from doing this business,” said Ms Mwajuma Abdallah. One has to pay Sh200 for a service to answer a call of nature.
Kibaha Town Council director Jeniffer Omolo said the area was previously for slaughtering animals, but after receiving public views it was transformed into a place where people can gather to eat roast meat and drink.
“So, we are on trial. We started four months ago as a place where people can gather and get goat meat and drink. The results are positive. People like the area,” she said
Currently the council is looking into the possibility of improving the slaughter area as well as build permanent toilets and other facilities. Council officials also think of relocating the place of gathering as it seems to be small.
Ms Omolo said the area was so potential because youth got employment. “We called on Dar and Kibaha residents to visit the area where they can enjoy with their families.”
According to her, more than 150 goats, sheep and chickens are slaughtered every Saturday. The area has more than 400 business people.
“Those who sell goats pay Sh4,000 as a market fee a day while businesspeople pay Sh500. The parking fee is Sh600 a day.
Business brisk during end of month
Business is brisk during the end of month because people have money, according to traders chairman Saidi Kapongo.
“During the end of the month, I sell up to six goats a day. I also sell chickens and ducks. To be honest, the business is not bad in this area.” Each goat is sold at Sh50,000 and above, depending on size.
He called on the council to lower fees as one has to pay for Sh4,000 to sell a goat.
Businessman Gabriel ole Laizer sells more than five goats on Saturdays. “This ‘mbuzi choma’ business has come at the right time as Dar es Salaam and Coast regions had no such a place.”
He said animals are examined before they are slaughtered to ensure that they are fit for human consumption.
He called upon customers not to worry about contamination.
Mr Erasto Mlay, a Mbezi-Mwisho resident, says: “This is my third time to come here for mbuzi choma. I heard about this area when I was in a daladala. It is a good place for people to come with families and enjoy the weekend.”
He advised the town council to improve the area to have enough toilets.
Mr Elia Mayalla, a Kibaha resident, said the past there was a similar market at Vigwaza, but it was far away and its services were poor.