Press Statement from African People’s Forum
For immediate release, 6th May 2010
Over 300 people gathered at the African People's Forum in Dar es Salaam on 5 and 6th May 2010
to discuss their ideas for prosperity, resilience, and inclusive growth in Africa. The event took place
at the same time as the World Economic Forum where business and some government leaders
were meeting to discuss Africa's Growth Strategy.
The African People’s Forum was a space for Tanzanian citizens to discuss their own development,
share the challenges they face and make their suggestions for the kind of future they want. The
participants were from a wide range of organisations including women’s groups, farmers
associations, pastoralist communities, and non-government development organisations.
We therefore call on leaders of business and government who had gathered at the World
Economic Forum to ensure:
o Pro-poor and gender sensitive economic strategies that will benefit the poor and vulnerable and
give people a way out of poverty.
o Transparency and citizens’ participation in decision making processes about the use of natural
resources and related investments.
o Proper implementation and enforcement of land and environment acts to protect existing rights
and access to land and other natural resources that people depend on for their livelihoods.
o Big business becomes part of the solution to climate change by dramatically cutting carbon
emissions, paying compensation for the impacts of climate change and environmental
destruction, and increasing investment in clean energy technology and projects to provide
electricity for all Tanzanians in a sustainable way.
o Women and men in poverty who are negatively affected by climate change are assisted to
have resilient livelihoods.
The participants in the Forum note that:
o The current growth orientated economic model as well as the investments from big business
that come with it are often not benefiting the citizens of Tanzania. Inequalities are growing and
the poorest are getting poorer.
o The government is not doing enough to protect the rights and interests of citizens from the
activities of big business that does all it can to profit.
o Small scale producers are losing their rights to land and other natural resources. For example
communities in Loliondo have been displaced to make way for a hunting company; in Kisarawe
farmers lost land to an international bio-fuel company; and in North Mara water sources the
communities depend on where polluted by an international mining company.
o The impacts of climate change are affecting women and men in Tanzania more and more, such
as through prolonged droughts, floods, and changing weather patterns.
o Basic services that people depend on such as health and education are not improving and in
some cases are deteriorating while government tries to cut costs. While people are being
asked as part of economic liberalization to pay for the costs of health and other services, big
corporations are free to profit through endless tax holidays.
o Women and children are suffering the worst consequences from these challenges due to their
vulnerable position and continuing patriarchy in the society.
We are demanding an alternative economic system that will ensure: prosperity; resilience;
and inclusive growth for all Africans.
For more information contact:
Sekela Kyomo, Communication Officer,
Cell: +255 755 789 999,