Tanzania’s President John Pombe Magufuli has banned foreign travels by public servants, a move seen as a measure to boost government coffers.
Magufuli, in just his third day in office since taking over from former president Jakaya Kikwete, did not mince his words when he ordered that all foreign travels by senior government officials were banned effective from Saturday.
The President made the announcement at a meeting with Permanent Secretaries, Deputy Permanent Secretaries, the governor of the Bank of Tanzania (BoT), among other high profile attendees at State House in Dar es Salaam.
In a statement issued by stat house after the meeting, the president ordered that all tasks that necessitated government officials to travel abroad will now be done by the country’s high commissioners and ambassadors in the various countries they are stationed in.
“Unless there is an urgent undertaking abroad one could be allowed to travel after getting permission from the President or the Chief Secretary,” said the statement signed by Assistant Press Secretary to the President, Ms Premi Kibanga.
According to the statement, Magufuli instead directed the senior government officials to make regular visits to rural areas to learn and help solve problems facing Tanzanians.
Also, the president hit the road running already when he disclosed that free primary education, one of his election campaign promises, will begin in January 2016. The students that will be enrolled beginning January 2016 will get free education until their completion of the secondary school level.