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DAILY NEWS Wednesday, October 28, 2009 (The United Republic of Tanzania



THE Fifth International African Diaspora Heritage Trail Conference began in Dar es
Salaam over the weekend, bringing together more than 200 delegates from African,
Caribbean, North America and Middle Eastern countries. Our staff writer DASSU
STEPHEN explores the essence and significance of the conference and the he writes…

More then 200 delegates from 22 African Caribbean,
North America and Middle Eastern countries are meeting
in Dar es Salaam for six days for the 5th International
African Diaspora Heritage Trail Conference being
convened under the theme: An African Homecoming:
Exploring the Origins of the African Diaspora and
Transforming Cultural Heritage Assets into Tourism

During the meeting that began at the weekend, delegates
will be engaged in intensive assemblies, panel
discussions, cultural events, tours, and a day of service
where both youth and adult participants will be involved
in a community service project in Kisarawe District. Nearly 80 speakers are expected to participate in the

“It is a multidisciplinary conference that brings together historians, educators, artists, government officials,
youth and visitors seeking a deeper understanding of the history and culture of the African Diaspora and who
are working to develop visitor heritage tourism destinations to enhance the understanding of the people and
cultures of Africa,” the permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr. Ladislaus
Komba says one of the activities of the conference is the official launching of Tanzania’s new “Ivory and
Slavery Route”.

“This is very important as it will create significant heritage tourism trail that documents the history of the slave
trade involving 5 million people living in East Africa and chronicling its impact on the people and culture of the
country and region”, says the Principal Conservator, Antiquities Division in the Ministry of Natural Resources
and Tourism, Mr. John Kimoro.

Historians say the route provides a first-ever journey to sites, towns and terrain retracing the Arab slave Trade
in Tanzania and East Africa where more than 5 million Africans were captured, enslaved and shipped to the
Middle East, India and, Asia and the West, many perishing before reaching their final destination.

“Tanzania, like many countries in Africa, suffered a tremendous upheaval of its people, economy and
institutions as a result of the East African slave trade. The Ivory and Slavery Route is our effort to tell the story,
to capture the significance of the loss and suffering that our ancestors experienced, and to do it in such a way
that our people and others can not only understand the tragedy but also undergo reconciliation and healing with
the many countries of the world that participated in this devastating period of history for Africa and the World,”
says the Director of Antiquities in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism, Donatius Kamamba.

The delegates will visit some of the official sites along the Ivory and Slavery Route and hear the historical and
cultural interpretation from museum officials, historians, cultural conservators and local people living in the
communities where memories of the slave trade have been preserved and passed down through generations.

President of Henderson Associates, Inc./Henderson Travel Service, ADHT Founder, Dr. Gaynelle Henderson-
Bailey, says the forum is an important one as, “we come to learn and listen, to experience and remember, to pay
homage to our ancestors who were the victims of the slave trade but also to celebrate our own legacy of
resistance, survival and triumphs in those parts of the world where we were scattered and now live and
contribute to the culture and economy of the world.”

The African Diaspora Heritage Trail (ADHT) is a private, non-profit, tax-exempt, transnational heritage tourism
initiative launched in conjunction with the government of Bermuda in 2001. ADHT is designed to benefit the
countries of the African Diaspora by providing accessible expertise and technical assistance in the development
of heritage tourism programmes.

The ADHT sites attract visitors from around the world seeking greater understanding and appreciation of the
African Diaspora experience, thereby building a strong economic base, creating jobs and commerce. It builds
long-term relationships between African descendants who reside around the globe, and establishes and active
network through which to build relationships among people of goodwill.

The ADHT conference partners for this year include Tanzania’s government through the Ministry of Natural
Resources and Tourism, the government of Bermuda, UNESCO Slave Route Project, Africa Travel
Association, Caribbean Tourism Organization and International Institute for Peace through Tourism.

On behalf of the government of the United Republic of Tanzania,
I take great pleasure in extending my heartfelt welcome to all
participants of the 5th International African Diaspora Heritage
Trail (ADHT) conference.

As President of the Country hosting this conference, it is truly an
honor. Undoubtedly you will enjoy some of the most inspiring
speakers, interactive development sessions and many more
activities to motivate and boost your knowledge both historically
and culturally. Indeed, I also hope that you will take advantage
of the social networking opportunities and interact with your
peers from around the world.

While in Tanzania, take the opportunity to experience all that
your country has to offer including beautiful white sands
beaches, abundant and unique wildlife, spectacular sceneries rich
culture, a warm and hospitable people and many other attractions
that Tanzania can offer.

I am delighted to welcome you to Tanzania – the
beautiful land of Kilimanjaro (Roof of Africa), Serengeti
(The new 8th Wonder of the World) and Spice Island of
Zanzibar. We are proud that the conference is taking
place n Tanzania.

We hope that be the end of the conference, you will have
made Tanzania your “home away from home”. Enjoy
your stay and experience the true nature of your origin.

H. E. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete
The President of the United Republic of Tanzania

On behalf of the ministry of natural Resources and Tourism
of the United Republic of Tanzania, I am delighted to
welcome overseas and local participants to the 5th
International African Diaspora Heritage Trail (ADHT)

We have an inspirational conference planned for you for the
next few days to come. You can expect stimulating
development sessions, exciting range of cultural events,
special concerts and many more activities to make you enjoy
the true Tanzanian hospitality.

I hope that you will take advantage of all that our country has
to offer. The unique encounter of Tanzanian’s fantastic
wildlife, Zanzibar’s dazzling beaches, Africa’s highest
mountain, historic and archaeological sites, cultural attractions and many more adventures as well as friendly
people, I am sure that your experience in Tanzania will be a memorable one.

I look forward to meeting all of you at this year’s 2009 ADHT conference. Whether this
Is your first visit to Tanzania or one of many, I hope that the experience will be uniquely memorable.

Hon. Shamsa S. Mwangunga
The Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism and
President of the Africa Travel Association
THE CITIZEN Dar es Salaam Wednesday, 28 October, 2009 (Op. Ed. Page)

Thinking Critically

We in Tanzania are lucky to have among us this week people of African ancestry in the
Diaspora who is holding discussions among themselves and with some of us on how the continent of their
ancestors is fairing in facing up to what Prof. Mwesiga Baregu correctly calls “the global jungle of predatory

They should well remember that their grandparents were sold into slavery in exchange for trinkets and gin to
whet the appetites of some of Africa’s indigenous rulers of those bad old days. Indigenous democratic
processes did not work as well as they ought to even in those days.

Tanzania’s civic elections last Sunday were a dress rehearsal for next year’s General Election. As our visitors
from the Diaspora engage in elevated discourses about the continent’s woes and how they may successfully be
addressed, I challenge them to ask their Tanzanian counterparts what good news should they take back to their
current permanent homes in Europe and America about the state of democratic governance in Africa, taking the
just ended civic poll and its aftermath as a case in point.

Should they go back taking as good news what has just happened in the elections?

The ruling party in Tanzania, whose leaders gave moving harangues on how the Western news media portrayed
Africa poorly, had apparently won many seats in the village/neighborhood-level leadership through
“walkovers”, with no voting having taken place on election day.

These ruling party leadership contenders were apparently elected unopposed after returning officers declared
that o party other than the ruling party had fielded a contender.

Let them ponder over one, admittedly small but hugely instructive, incident I witnessed in the neighborhood in
which I reside that is close to the Mlimani campus of the University of Dar es Salaam. In that neighborhood,
the ruling party’s contender for the chairpersonship was up against an opposition candidate. But a day before
polling day, the ruling party’s local zealots went around with a loudspeaker declaring that the opposition
candidate had withdrawn from the race! Fortunately that candidate quickly countered the ruse, and in the
relevant poll results, he won 68 votes against the 100 garnered by the ruling party’s candidate, who was the
incumbent and backed by all the rich ruling party bigwigs who reside in the said neighborhood. It has to be
That there were about 30 votes or more which were declared spoiled at the insistence of ruling party officials on
account of bearing the wrong surname of the opposition candidate much as they indicated they wee cast for the
opposition candidate.

Our brothers and sisters from the Diaspora ought to remember that the continent of their ancestors is rich in
both natural and human resources, embodied in a people who are
renowned for readiness to work diligently and with kind hearts.

Nevertheless, this is a continent that has had the misfortune of having a leadership deficit, al the way from the
days when the grandparents of our Diaspora visitors were sold into slavery by the crop of bad leaders of those
days. Today’s bad leaders enter into bloodsucking mining contracts, for example. They pervert the course of
democracy to perpetuate them selves in power.

You do not even have to move out of the vicinity of this supposedly haven of earthly peace to come face to face
with primary school classrooms meant to take 45 pupils crammed with more than 100 such bewildered souls
repeating meaningless phrases uttered by equally dazed and poorly prepared and miserably paid teachers.
Let our Diaspora visitors ask their Tanzanian hosts to take them to Kilamba Primary School at Mbagala
Charambe in Temeke District, for example, and they will find children of fellow Africans, in the 21 st century,
sitting in dusty and poorly ventilated hovels they are forced to call classrooms, which often have neither chairs
nor desks, let alone adequate numbers of pit-latrines.

Let the Diaspora visitors take time off from their busy elevated discourse on investment
Portfolios and cultural tourism to visit some of the newly established ward levels community schools in the
country, which often suffer from a scarcity of everything a secondary schools needs – qualified teachers,
textbooks, science laboratories, libraries, computer laboratories, play grounds, lavatories, etc.

How do ruling parties presiding over such dysfunctional social services continue to garner near-land slides in
civic and general elections?

Dr. Lwaitama is a senior lecturer,
Philosophy Programme,
University of Dar es Salaam
THE GUARDIAN Wednesday October 28, 2009 (Republic of Tanzania)


It is a great honor for Tanzanians to host the Fifth International African Diaspora Heritage Trail (ADHT)
conference currently going on in Dar es Salaam. As noted
By President Jakaya Kikwete when he opened the historic forum on Monday, this is a golden opportunity to
rekindle the spirit of Pan-Africanism so assertively articulated by the continent’s founding fathers and the great
sons and daughters of Africa in the diaspora.

Indeed, there is a need for Africans and their kith and kin in the diaspora to demonstrate in both word and deed
that history has not set them irretrievable apart. We therefore wish to join the president in appealing to the
African Diaspora to use their immense potential and opportunities to help develop Africa, a continent where
their grandparents practiced their earlier civilization. There should be no inherent shame in our recognition of
the fact that most of Africa is yet to equal the African Diaspora in terms of social and economic development.

We are told that some 750 billion USD worth of assets in the United States is in the hands of people of African
ancestry. One can only imagine the miracles that massive wealth could perform were part of it directed into
initiatives aimed at making Africa a better place to live.

And it should really not be a question of the continent begging for alms; rather, it should be about exploring
ways of making the diaspora come into Africa with investments, development finance, rare skills and

It would be about the continent and the diaspora coming up with workable strategies to build partnerships for
progress so that, to steal from President Kikwete, “Africans and their kith and kin in the diaspora who are bound
by common heritage are finally bound by their common prosperity”.

With respect to the president’s concern over the persistently negative picture of Africa painted by the Western
media, we also see co-operation and partnership between the media in Africa and those owned by the African
Diaspora forming part of the permanent solution both parties would be happy with.

We have no option but to build a media fraternity that will properly and adequately serve the interests of both
Africans at home and their kith and kin in the diaspora. For
this dream to come true, we must redefine our news parameters and create institutions
able to foster the development of media networks disseminating the right information for
targeted audience.

The Dar es Salaam conference has brought together over 200 delegates from a total of 22 African, Caribbean,
North American and Middle Eastern countries, which guarantees enough brains and enough love for, and
commitment to, Africa and its people for the forum to be a very real relevance and utility to both the continent
and the African Diaspora.

With the president’s appeal to the African Diaspora to use their immense financial muscle to promote Africa’s
tourist attractions, there should be nothing to hinder progress in the continent’s tourism and – by extension – the
lifting of Africans to greater heights on the ladder of social and economic development.