Today, Zanzibaris and all Tanzanians mark the 58th anniversary of the Revolution of Zanzibar.
On January 12, 1964, the people of Zanzibar toppled the minority rule regime of Sultan Jamshid Bin Abdullah to let in majority rule by African revolutionaries.
Indeed, the spirit of the revolution was the quest for freedom, equality, equity and justice for all. These remain the key principles by all those who seek to build a society that offers equity in the balanced development of its people.
Such principles are well explained by Nelson Mandela’s thinking when he says: “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve.”
Literature also shows that Mahatma Gandhi took the religious principle of ahimsa (doing no harm) common to Buddhism, Hinduism and Jainism and turned it into a non-violent tool for mass action. He used it to fight not only colonial rule but social evils such as racial discrimination and untouchability as well.
At the same time, Martin Luther King Jr argues: “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly”.
Based on the above explanations on the principles of human freedom, justice, equality and democracy, Zanzibaris chose to oust an Arab government that only perpetuated the interests of the minority Arabs, leaving the majority Africans to live unhappy life.
The anniversary should serve as a reminder to all in power across the globe that whenever they perpetuate to serve the interests of only a small group of people instead of the entire society, they should be prepared to face the wrath of the people—even in forms of revolutions. This may take a while to happen, but it is the only logical ending.
We congratulate Zanzibaris for showing the world the way towards attaining true freedom. Let embrace the principles.
ACT ON RISING FOOD PRICES
Global food prices have hit the highest level in over a decade after rising by more than 30 percent in the last year, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) says.
The agency’s figures highlighted the soaring cost of cereals and vegetable oils around the world. Vegetable oil prices hit a record high after rising by almost 10 percent in October.
Disruptions to supplies, high commodity prices, factory closures and political tensions are helping to push up prices.
Tanzania has not remained unaffected. National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) quoted Tanzania’s inflation rate at 4.2 percent in the year ending December 2021, the highest in the last 50 months.
Other products and the reported percentage rise on prices in brackets include rice (2.6 percent, beef (6.4 percent), goat meat (8.3 percent) and cold drinks (5.1 percent).
On the other hand, the annual inflation rate for other non-food and non-alcoholic beverages for December 2021 decreased to 3.9 alarming percent from 4.0 percent that was recorded in November, 2021. It is crucial that authorities should come up with innovative measures to try and stabilise prices of food products.
High food prices negatively affect household budgets. This coupled with poor rains only highlight tougher times ahead for common people. It is time to act.