Birthday: October 7, 1950
Age: 70 Years, 70 Year Old Males
Sun Sign: Libra
Also Known As: Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete
Born in: Msoga
Famous as: President of the United Republic of Tanzania
Spouse/Ex-: Salma Kikwete
children: Ally Kikwete, Khalfan Kikwete, Khalifa Kikwete, Miraj Kikwete, Mohamed Kikwete, MwanaAsha Kikwete, Rashid Kikwete, Ridhiwani Kikwete, Salama Kikwete
education: University of Dar es Salaam
Who is Jakaya Kikwete?
Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete is the current President of the United Republic of Tanzania who succeeded Benjamin Mkapa. He was elected on a CCM ticket, a party that is very popular in that country. The lively East African President is credited with a lot of changes and transformations in the East African state. The President is hailed to be out going, down to earth, accessible and media friendly. He hails from a leader’s family and probably that is the reason he rose through the ranks to become Tanzania’s most powerful man. His grandfather, Mrisho Kikwete was a local chief. His father was a District Commissioner during the colonial days, Regional Secretary and then an Ombudsman when Tanzania got its independence. There is no doubt that he learnt much of his leadership from these two highly influential personalities in his life. All along his school life, he was effortlessly elected into leadership positions and this led to his easy election in CCM and TANU youth wings after graduating from school. He is now in his second term, in power, after winning decisively during the last general elections. The professional economist has also been elected as head of regional organizations like the chairman of the AU and SADC
Childhood & early Life
Kikwete was born on 7th October 1950, in Msoga, Bagamoyo, Tanzania formerly Tanganyika. Tanzania is along the East African shores of the Indian Ocean.
In 1959 he joined ‘Karatu Primary School’ in Tanzania and transferred for his middle school education to ‘Tengeru School’. He enrolled in ‘Kibaha Secondary School’ for his O-levels.
He remained at ‘Kibaha Secondary School’ for his advanced level education. He later joined the ‘University of Dar es Salaam’ where he graduated with a degree in economics.
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This charismatic leader has moved from one position to another in various party ranks and from one working station to another during his political career. For instance, in 1977 when Zanzibar's ‘Afro-Shirazi Party’ (ASP) and TANU merged to form ‘Chama Cha Mapinduzi’ (CCM), he was taken to Zanzibar and assigned the duty of starting a new party administration and organization in the island.
In 1994, he became finance minister of Tanzania. He was later appointed ‘Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation’. He remained in this position for a decade until he was elected President of the United Republic of Tanzania. He is till date the Tanzania’s longest serving foreign minister.
He has been deeply involved in the mission of rebuilding regional integration in East Africa popularly known as the ‘East African Community’. The community seeks to establish a political and economic union between Tanzania, South Sudan, Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi and Uganda.
He was also instrumental in the initiation of the ‘Helsinki Process on Globalization and Democracy’.
On 4 May 2005, he emerged the winner among 11 CCM candidates who were seeking the party's nomination to vie for Presidency, in the general elections. In the general elections that were held the same year, he was announced the winner by the Electoral Commission, he was sworn into office as the Fourth President of the United Republic of Tanzania.
On 26 May 2013, he said in an ‘African Union’ meeting that President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda and his Rwandese counterpart, President Paul Kagame could bargain for a ceasefire with the ‘Allied Democratic Forces-National Army for the Liberation of Uganda’ and the ‘Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda’ since there was a good precedent set by President Joseph Kabila of the DRC who negotiated with the ‘March 23 Movement’. President Museveni expressed his willingness to negotiate in his response.
The President is embarking of fulfilling the ‘Tanzania’s Vision 2025’. This is the vision of moving the country from a low income country to a middle income country. There is also another model of fast-tracking the economic uplifting of the country that is dubbed the ‘Big Results Now’.
This model was borrowed from Malaysia and has also been a success in Nigeria and currently being implemented in Rwanda. The President when unveiling it said that the country will concentrate on exploiting the following areas for it to succeed; Mobilization of resources, Energy and natural gas, Water, Education, Transport and Agriculture.
Awards & Achievements
In 2007, he received the honor of ‘Most Excellent Order of the Pearl of Africa’, in Uganda.
In 2009 in Comoros Island, he received the honor of ‘Order of the Green Crescent of Comoros’.
In 2009, he was conferred upon the honor of Order of Abd al-Aziz, in Saudi Arabia.
Personal Life & Legacy
Jakaya the family man got married to her long time fiancé Salma Kikwete in 1989, although this was his second marriage. They were later blessed with 8 children including one that they adopted. The children are; Ridhiwani, Salama, Khalifa, Miraj, Ally, Khalfan, Rashid, MwanaAsha and Mohamed the adopted one.
The handsome and always jovial President has been seen to be very co-operative with other leaders of the East African Community. He has always offered his advice and assistance when need be. For instance, he helped in solving the Kenyan crisis that happened after the controversial 2007 general elections.
Together with his predecessor, H.E. Benjamin Mkapa, former UN Secretary General Koffi Annan and other leaders arbitrated between the incumbent President Mwai Kibaki of Kenya and Raila Odinga and convinced them to form a grand coalition government