AS we welcome the New Year - 2010, there is a need to reflect deeply on the challenges we all face in redeeming this country from the three major enemies of development – poverty, disease and illiteracy.
This is another time for us to revisit the values on which Tanzania was built, and remind ourselves that our survival as a sovereign nation depends on consolidating our unity and support of one another.
This past year has been largely one of struggle for most Tanzanians, with the cost of living continually increasing and no immediate respite in sight. Along with everyone else, we at THISDAY and our sister KULIKONI newspapers have also had to deal with our share of challenges in 2009, but with the support of our readers, advertisers, committed staff and correspondents, we have persevered.
And regardless of how much tougher things may get, we promise our readers and advertisers that throughout 2010, we will not shrink away from our responsibility to deliver the quality content that they have come to expect from us.
At the same time, we would like to reiterate our commitment to give full support to the government in its declared resolve to fight all evils in society, in the spirit of truth and transparency.
We must restate also that while playing this role, we shall continue at all times to deal with real issues, and refrain from intentionally targeting individuals on the basis of malice alone.
We will continue to speak out against grand corruption and other such development constraints, and we expect more of the hitherto largely-silent citizenry to also join us in the struggle as the negative impacts of these maladies become ever more apparent.
With so much at stake going into 2010, every bona fide Tanzanian should be ready to make decisions based on what is best for Tanzania as a whole, and not on what is best for any one political party, special interest group, or individual.
The New Year should also be a time for the government to reflect on the improvements it needs to make in every sector of the economy, so as to avoid a repeat of past mistakes and failures. Top priority should remain the overall quest to boost the people's living standards.
Being an election year, with voters across the country set to cast their ballots in the presidential and parliamentary polls slated for October, it’s important that all Tanzanians receive enough education about their democratic rights and responsibilities. At the end of the day, the decision of the majority at the ballot box must be final.
In other words, we must usher in the New Year with new vigour and stronger determination to turn our country into a better place to live in, whose people are filled with real hope, ambition and confidence about their future. Such resolve must start at the level of the individual.
May the New Year bring an abundance of peace and harmony alongside the prospects of future success and prosperity.