- Unlike in some previous celebrations where people of Zanzibar have been leaning towards their political affiliations whereby some shunned the celebrations, the situation was different yesterday.
Dar es Salaam. Reconciliation mood characterized the Revolution Day celebrations yesterday as Zanzibaris set aside their ideological differences during the 57th anniversary of the Zanzibar Revolution.
On January 12, Zanzibaris commemorate the 1964 Revolution that overthrew the Sultan of Zanzibar and his mainly Arab government by local African revolutionaries.
Unlike in some previous celebrations where people of Zanzibar have been leaning towards their political affiliations whereby some shunned the celebrations, the situation was different yesterday.
In some areas in Pemba, it was a district commissioner who led processions of some ACT-Wazalendo party members. The Mnazi Mmoja ground was a home to both members from CCM and ACT-Wazalendo parties.
In his speech, President Hussein Mwinyi said: “It is a comfort that we are celebrating our revolutionary day at times when unity and solidarity among Zanzibaris are strong after the formation of GNU. I urge all, regardless of your political and religious ideologies, to unite in maintaining solidarity and love among us,” he noted.
“I thank my immediate subordinates, including the first Vice President Seif Sharif Hamad. I repeat first Vice President Seif Sharif Hamad and the second Vice President Hemed Suleiman Abdallah for supporting and helping me run the country properly,” he said.
He vowed to continue strengthening peace and harmony among the people of Zanzibar and take legal action against a person or group of persons engaging in acts of breaching peace and security.
“I ask my fellow Zanzibaris to continue trusting, respecting and tolerating each other and forget our previous differences,” he noted.
With the existing peace, harmony, solidarity and unity among the Zanzibaris, he vowed to revive the country’s economy under the leadership of his eighth phase government.
The government is currently increasing its tax base to fund the country’s social-development programmes.
The revenue collections by Zanzibar Revenue Board (ZRB) have increased from Sh22 billion in October up to Sh36.9 billion in December, 2020 revealed. In trade, total annual exports valued at Sh62.22 billion during January to November 2020, almost a double increase from Sh33.27 billion recorded in same period in 2019.
Dr Mwinyi said his big dream was to see Zanzibar becomes a business hub for Eastern and Central African countries.
“I don’t subscribe to the school that pushes for higher taxes. Higher taxes drive businesses away. Affordable taxes attract more businesses, hence, growth for everyone,” he said.
He said his government was working hard to improve tourism, construction, agriculture, marine transport and industries sectors.
“The tourism industry continues to grow, reaching 85 percent of the 2020 target. We set a target of attracting at least 250,855 tourists by December 2020, after considering the threat Covid-19,” said Dr Mwinyi.
As of November 2020 a total of 212,050 tourists had visited Zanzibar. He said the government would closely monitor, coordinate and find solutions to the challenges facing the sector to make it contribute a lot in the national economy.
“Our goal is to ensure that our guests (tourists) enjoy their residence and service in Zanzibar and motivate them to stay long and prefer to come back to Zanzibar when they need to do so,” he said.
In another development Dr Mwinyi wished to make the Revolution Day ceremony very big as it was before but couldn’t do it due to the impact of the Covid-19 epidemic.
According to him, the funds intended to be spent on the celebrations will be switched to social services development including health, education and water.
“This situation is not permanent, the ceremonies will be held in the usual order in the future,” he noted.