14th July, 2021
Your Excellency, Samia Suluhu Hassan, President of the United Republic of Tanzania;
Your Excellency Dr. Hussein Ali Mwinyi, President of Zanzibar;
Your Excellency Former Presidents of the United Republic of Tanzania and Former Presidents of Zanzibar;
Your Excellencies Former Heads of State and Governments and friends of Late Former President Benjamin William Mkapa;
Mama Anne Mkapa; Widow of the Late President Benjamin William Mkapa;
Honourable Dorothy Gwajima (MP), Minister for Health, Community Development, Elders, Gender and Children;
Honourable Nassor Ally Mazrui (MRC), Minister for Health, Social Development, Elders, Gender and Children of Zanzibar;
Honourable Dr. Khalid Salum Mohamed (MRC), Minister of State, Second Vice President Office, Zanzibar;
Members of Diplomatic Corps;
Our Esteemed Partners,
Chair and Trustees of the Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation Board of Trustees
Representatives from the Private Sector and the Non- State Actors,
Family and Friends;
Ladies and Gentlemen;
My task appears to be so easy. Just to say thank you. That is what I thought too when asked to deliver the vote of thanks on this day. Little did I know that it is not that simple, because I feel the word “thank you” is an understatement compared to what you have done to us. We have a clue how demanding your schedule is, and we know how many miles you have gone just to be with us today.
Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen,
How can thank you be enough to Your Excellency President Samia Suluhu Hassan for awarding us with your good 4 hours of your precious time to be with us. Not to mention your generous commitment to the Endowment Fund and a promise to continue walking with us, all the wayahead. notwithstanding, the award you have conferred to our Late President Benjamin Mkapa few minutes ago in recognition of his outstanding service to this country and its people. Thank you cannot be enough. But thank you is all we can say, since English is short of words, and adding to the flavor we say “Asante Sana Mama ambaye ni Rais wetu wa Tanzania”.
To Your Excellency President Mwinyi, I still cannot find words enough to thank you. Your long association with this family and the Mkapa Foundation demand us to say more than thank you. You were our first Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Mkapa Foundation for the first five years as appointed by the Late President Benjamin Mkapa. And you have always remained one of us and despite your highly demanding schedule of duties, you found time on top of that to be with us today. You further awarded us with a firm commitment to our Endowment Fund, and a call to us to work with you in delivering aspirations for Health for All in Zanzibar. We surely can not ask for more. We thank you countless times.
To our former Heads of State and Government present in this room and to those who are following us virtually, we thank you for joining us to commemorate your good brother and your friend. It is very comforting to see you, and through you we learn the value of friendship and comradeship. These commemorations would not be as colourful without your attendance. Thank you for your reflections and kind words you have spoken about our beloved Late President Mkapa. Your words will remain our lasting memory. May you be blessed with good health and more life for us to keep tapping more from your fountain of wisdom.
To our donors and partners, thank you in abundance. Thank you for supporting us far. We have achieved what we have achieved because of your reliable and deliberate support. Thank you for making this commemoration possible. We appreciate your donations in kind and money that made this event successful. Your attendance, and participation in the panel today is an expression of optimism about your commitment to keep working with us to advance the agenda of ‘Health for All’. We promise to remain true to our partnership and deliver to our promise. Thank you for believing in our vision, our mission and most importantly, to the dream of a stateman we commemorate today, His Excellency Late President Benjamin William Mkapa.
To our friends and guests, thank you sharing with us your precious time and for blessing us with your attendance. That is more than what we could ask for. You could have turned down our invitation, but you did not. We count on you to keep journeying with us going forward. We ask you to keep spreading the message and support us in all ways you can. Be it your feedback, spreading the word about our work, and donation. We would like to assure you; our Endowment Fund is open to you all. All of you can be donors. We value a coin as much as we value a note. We believe small change goes miles in bringing about change. Every coin, every note matters to us. Kindly donate to our Fund.
To our sponsors, you deserve a mention. Thank you to our Platinum Sponsors EFM, , Azam TV, the NBC Bank, UNAIDS and UNICEF as well as the Gold Sponsors are Clouds Media, Citi bank, WHO, Irish Aid and Mwananchi Communications. Late President Mkapa believed so much in the role of Private Sector. He was unapologetic about it. It is pleasing that you have come out to honor him through sponsoring this event. To our media, thank you for spreading the word about this Symposium and the legacy of our beloved Late President Mkapa.
Last but not least, may I take this opportunity on behalf of Mama Anna Mkapa, the widow of H.E. Benjamin Mkapa and the entire family, to thank the Board of Trustees, Management and Staff of the Mkapa Foundation, for the thought of commemorating our beloved father with Mkapa Legacy Symposium. We thank you for keeping him and his dream for this country immortal.
It will be a remiss of me not expressing my gratitude to the entire Symposium Organizing Committee. Thank you Dr. Ellen Mkondya Senkoro, our illustrious CEO of The Benjamin William Mkapa Foundation and the Chair of the Organizing Committee. Thank you, Committee Members and Staff of the Foundation, for your dedication and good work. You will all agree with me that the excellence in which this Symposium was organized befits the stature and name of the Late President Benjamin William Mkapa. You have done him justice. You deserve our round of applause!
If there is a word, I have overstated in my speech is thank you. I have mentioned it 22 times. Before you get tired of it, let me end here by saying for the 23rd and last time, thank you endlessly.