Hand to the Tiller III – the Cardinal

Well there’s no end to Kilimo Kwanza (Agriculture First) – Tanzania’s agricultural development ‘vision’. Much has been said, little of it sensible. Until yesterday, when the Cardinal Pengo turned his attention to it at the launch of a catholic church agriculture training institute. As reported by Mwananchi newspaper today:

The slogan Agriculture First used by national leaders can’t change or bring development to agriculture. The thing to do is to educate and train the farmer  if you want to develop agriculture.

Let’s give the Cardinal the benefit of the doubt and extrapolate from this that he’s disappointed with the supply side approach (all those hand tillers!) being promoted by government now. And let’s say he’s calling for innovation and productivity, rather than the more mundane ‘training’. In sum, he seems to be calling for some demand side stimulation. It may be going too far to attribute to him a call for an ‘enabling environment’ . We can leave that to the mysterious “Gloria Twiga”, who when not banging on about civil service allowances, can be seen rightly laying into Kilimo Kwanza too!


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