TANZANIA – The government of Tanzania received a loan of US$450 million (TSh1.035 trillion) from the World Bank to support the implementation of the third phase of the Tanzania Social Action Fund (Tasaf) project.

The permanent secretary ministry of finance Dotto James said that unlike the first phase, the emphasis on the second phase is to strengthen the beneficiary’s ability to work by enabling poor households increase abilities to produce.

Explaining, he said they would put more emphasis on enabling households to become more involved in production activities that will increase their incomes, promote local economies, where the activity would be taking place through implementation of the program.

“This phase we will ensure that we improve infrastructure in the education, health, water and investment sectors in order to develop children in key areas and most especially nutrition,” said James.

The third phase of the project is in line with the country’s five-year National Development Plan (phase 2) whose strategy is to grow the economy into a middle economy by 2025.

The projects include construction of classrooms, rural roads, health centres, teachers housing, infrastructure for irrigation, and water reservoirs during rainy seasons, which has benefited residents of 40 municipal councils in Tanzania mainland and Zanzibar.

“Following the success of both phase one and two, the government decided to implement a third phase that will run for 10 years starting August 2012 to 2023 in two phases,” he said.

Adding that, “The first phase which is expected to end this year will pave way for the second programme which will end in 2023 that WB issued a loan of Sh1.035 trillion,”.

He noted that the programme aims to empower poor households to use the opportunity to increase their income including social and economic service that will develop their children.

According to him, the programme through its second phase will implement income generating projects including projects that will produce employment as well as developing infrastructure in the education, health and water sectors.

Tasaf director general Ladislaus Mwamanga said that they will strengthen accountability in this phase, and that so far after every two months they have been reviewing their projects to know people who have either shifted, died or newborns.

The World Bank Country Director Bella Bird said the loans issued to Tanzania will enable poor households have a capacity to produce and improve lives.