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PM pays tributes to Mwalimu Nyerere on his 100th birth anniversary

  • Published
    14th Apr, 2022

PM paid tributes to the great leader, former Tanzania President and friend of India, Mwalimu Nyerere on his 100th Birth Anniversary.


About Mwalimu Julius Nyerere:

  • Julius Nyerere was born in March 1922. After working as a teacher, he was a founder member of the Tanganyika African National Union (TANU) and became a strong voice in the struggle for independence of Tanganyika from Britain.
  • After independence was gained, he became the first Prime Minister of Tanganyika from 1961 to 1962 and its first President from 1963 to 1964.
  • When Tanzania was formed by the union of Tanganyika and Zanzibar, Nyerere became its first president, ruling from 1964 to 1985.
  • Nyerere did create a one-party state and there have been accusations of economic mismanagement and detaining his opponents without trial.
  • Despite these misgivings, his rule brought stability to the country after independence and his legacy is viewed favourably by most Tanzanians.
  • He is often described as the "Father of the Nation" and Mwalimu, his honorific Swahili title means "Teacher", reflecting the regard in which is he was held.
  • Ideologically, he promoted a political philosophy known as Ujamaa.

Philosophy of Ujamma:

  • Swahili word ujamaa which means familyhood is the term chosen by Nyerere, with the cooperation of his nationalist party, Tanzania African National Union (TANU) to describe the kind of socialist society they aim to establish in Tanzania.
  • Nyerere's philosophy of Ujamaa was rooted in traditional African values and had as its core the emphasis on familyhood and communalism of traditional African societies.
  • At the same time, it was influenced by a mix of Fabian socialism and Catholic social teachings.
  • Nyerere's ideas represented an attempt at fusing European concepts deriving from Kantian liberalism with the ethos derived from his more communitarian native African society.
  • Nevertheless, Ujamaa was founded on a philosophy of development that was based on three essentials - freedom, equality and unity. The ideal society, Nyerere argued, must always be based on these three essentials:
    • According to him, there must be equality, because only on that basis will men work cooperatively.
    • There must be freedom, because the individual is not served by society unless it is his. And
    • There must be unity, because only when society is unified can its members live and work in peace, security and wellbeing.
  • The uniqueness in Nyerere's concept of Ujamaa however, was the complete rejection of class struggle as the basis of his "African socialism".
    • For him, the foundation of African socialism is not the class struggle, but the traditional African institution of the extended family system.
    • It was as a result of his or her socialization in the family, not antagonistic class relations that the African acquired that attitude of mind, which ensured a predisposition towards socialism.
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