Speech

April 11, 2013

As Prepared by

Mkoka Village, Dodoma Region, Tanzania

Remarks by MCC CEO Daniel W. Yohannes at Compact Completion Event in Dodoma

Marking the arrival of electricity at Mkoka Village in Tanzania

Distinguished guests,

Hamjambo! Vipi Mambo? 

This September will mark the official completion of Tanzania’s 698 million dollar MCC compact to reduce poverty through economic growth. I have come back to Tanzania ahead of that important date to celebrate with you the progress that has been made through our strategic investments in three key sectors: transportation, water and energy.

And here in Mkoka, we see what happens when the lights come on and stay on.

The power of electricity is creating new opportunities for
• businesses and entrepreneurs to succeed,
• students to study,
• health centers to meet your needs, and
• communities to prosper. 
Now, it is easier to recharge your cell phone or operate machinery.

These improvements are making a real difference in the lives of Tanzanian families.

And the great partnership represented here today is responsible for expanding access to reliable electricity for all of you.

Through the leadership of the Tanzanian government, we see a steady commitment to reforming policies and institutions for sustainability. We see a growing willingness to create the enabling conditions for more and more private companies and entrepreneurs to be the engines of growth and job creation. Let me personally thank a true leader and my friend, President Kikwete, for his strong support of Tanzania’s MCC compact and for working with us to explore ways to leverage our development dollars to attract greater private-sector investments. Among his many accomplishments, part of President Kikwete’s legacy is signing Tanzania’s first compact, seeing its completion, and helping Tanzania qualify for a second MCC compact.

Through MCC’s innovative approach to development, I am proud of our role in making an investment that reflects what the Tanzanian people themselves say they need for economic growth. And, I thank our counterpart, MCA-Tanzania, for managing the successful implementation of the compact, including the energy projects.

And through the hard work of Pike Electric, we see the private sector lend incredible know-how and technology to achieve sustainable development solutions.

As we gather to inaugurate the completion of Pike’s work, I want to thank this American company from North Carolina for installing 833 kilometers of transmission and distribution lines in communities throughout the greater Dodoma region. And, I appreciate the added commitment Pike has shown not just to do business in Tanzania but also to be a good neighbor.  Using their own funds and separate from the contract, Pike wired a local school for electricity and lights that give Tanzanian children an opportunity to attend nighttime classes and extra tutoring sessions and gives the community another venue to hold various activities. I ask you all to join me in applauding Mr. Eric Pike, the CEO of Pike Electric, for partnering with us to make reliable electricity a reality.

Today is a celebration of how government and business came together. Now, it is up to you—the residents of Mkoka and all of Tanzania—to remain vigilant and vocal that your connection to electricity endures and continues to benefit you and your families well into the future. I challenge you to maintain it and use it to light your path to a future of even greater prosperity.

Congratulations again on this achievement, and I am especially honored that the U.S. Government’s Millennium Challenge Corporation could work with the people and government of Tanzania and Pike Electric to turn the lights on here!

Thank you. Asanteni sana.