By Spy Uganda.
Tanzania: At a time when countries have imposed and are easing lockdowns in the fight against COVID-19, Tanzanian president John Pombe Magufuli insists there will be no such thing as lockdown in the East African nation.
For the above reason, Magufuli has urged the Tanzanian business community to make use of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown to rake in huge profits.
During an address to a church congregation over the weekend, Magufuli stressed that when the neighbours are done with their lockdowns, they could still come for help with food hence advising businessmen dealing in foodstuffs to identify customers from countries that had imposed lockdown and charge them exorbitantly.
The head of state claimed his neigbouring countries restricted inter-country movements at a time when Tanzanians were attending to farms.
This, according him, explained why such countries were now experiencing a nationwide food shortage.
“Waliji-lockdown wakati sisi tukiwa tunashughulika kulima. Sasa tutunze vyakula vyetu. Na kama tunaamua kuuza, tuuze kwa bei ya juu saaaana, watwangeni kweli, nasema watwangeni saaaana
(They have food shortage because their governments imposed lockdown when we were busy in the farms. You must preserve your farm produce, and if you must sell, do it above the normal price. Charge them exorbitantly. I repeat, overcharge them),” he advised.
Tanzania borders with Uganda, Kenya,Rwanda, Burundi, Comoro Islands, The Indian Ocean, Mozambique, Malawi, Zambia and Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
Magufuli said hospitals in the country showed a growing trend of recoveries and promised to open more public places such as schools and universities.
“If the trend I am seeing continues in the coming week, I plan to open up universities so students can continue with their education.
Magufuli’s government has been criticised for lack of transparency regarding the toll that COVID-19 has taken, with the last official update on April 29 listing 480 cases. According to the WHO however, Tanzania has recorded 509 cases, 21 deaths and 183 recoveries.
Meanwhile, the civil aviation authority announced that all restrictions on air travel had been lifted paving way for passenger flights to begin operations.
“Following the decrease of COVID-19 reported cases, the United Republic of Tanzania has decided to relax travel restrictions to gradually allow resumption of economic activities in air transport,” the Tanzania Civil Aviation Authority said on Twitter.
The Health Ministry has also said incoming travelers will only be screened at the point of entry and not be subjected to quarantine as they look forward to open up tourism industry.