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Assignment Details:

  • Words: 4000




Question 1


John Magufuli: Tanzania’s ‘ bulldozer’ president


The late John Pombe Magufuli was the son of a peasant farmer, who became Tanzania’s president most praised and criticised president. He started his political career in 1995 when he was elected MP, in 2000 he became a Cabinet Minister, was elected president in 2015 and was also re-elected in 2020. His re-election for a second term in 2020 was controversial amid opposition accusations of fraud and intimidation. Before he was president he acquired the nickname “the bulldozer” for driving a programme to build roads as minister for works, and later was hailed for his anti- corruption stance and his distinct dislike for wasting money. His results -oriented actions were also framed as applicable to other African countries – a dose of what the continent needed to deal with its governance issues.


On the very first day of his presidency, he sent a stark message that he would not tolerate the country’s chronic absenteeism in its civil service, when he visited the finance ministry offices, asking for the whereabouts of those not at work. He also purged thousands of so-called “ghost workers” – essentially non-existent employees – from the public payroll, and fired officials considered corrupt or under-performing, in public. Sometimes this was even done live on television. And he clamped down on what he saw as extravagant spending, cancelling Independence Day celebrations for the first time in 54 years. Instead, he ordered a public clean-up, getting his own hands dirty by picking up rubbish outside State House.


He also banned all foreign trips for public servants. In the first year of Magufuli’s presidency, this approach earned him a great deal of praise, inspiring the Twitter hashtag: #WhatWouldMagufuliDo. Others called for more African leaders to emulate his leadership style. In 2017, a Kenyan professor went so far as to call for the “Magufulication” of Africa during an address at the University of Dar es Salaam. But from the outset, it was also clear there was a darker side to his leadership – that a number of his initiatives would slowly chip away at the country’s democratic space.


In January 2016, barely two months into his term, his administration announced that state TV would no longer broadcast live parliamentary proceedings, officially as a cost- cutting measure. The opposition saw this as censorship, as it was among the few ways it could hold the government to account. It planned demonstrations against the ban, but the government responded by banning all protests. Another example of such censorship was Magufuli’s response to a 2017 song by popular Tanzanian rapper Nay wa Mitego. Less than a day after its release, Mitego found himself in police custody. He was accused of insulting the president and maligning the government for his song. The fear he sang about had come true – he was indeed detained at the Central Police Station in Dar es Salaam. Although President Magufuli ordered Nay wa Mitego’s release just a day later, he advised that the song should be reworked to include lyrics about other problems in the society, such as tax cheats.


In 2017, opposition MP Tundu Lissu, who three years later ran against Magufuli for the presidency, was shot and seriously injured outside his home. Mr Lissu accused the state of trying to kill him and he was charged with hate speech for calling the president a dictator. The government denied any involvement in the attack. In what was seen by human rights groups as curbing press freedom, the president’s administration suspended newspapers. Amnesty International also said that journalists feared being targeted. And in 2018, Tanzania passed a law to punish anyone questioning official statistics, making the state the sole custodian of data. The World Bank said the changes were “deeply worrying”.


But even his critics agree that Magufuli contributed to Tanzania’s development, investing in several large infrastructure projects, such as the creation of a standard gauge railway to connect the country with its regional neighbours, the expansion of major highways, and the construction of a bus rapid transit system in the commercial hub of Dar es Salaam. He also increased electricity production to the grid which reduced the need for power rationing. And he revived the state-run national airline, Air Tanzania.


Calls for other regional leaders to emulate Magufuli’s style diminished as he faced criticism from political opponents, civil society and Western countries, who said he was oppressing the opposition, curtailing press freedom and holding foreign companies to ransom.


  • Identify and explain the leadership style exhibited by Magufuli. Support your answer with any five (5) relevant features/characteristics he followed.


  • From the case study, identify five changes brought about by Magufuli which earned him praises and any five actions/changes that earned him criticism both locally and internationally.


  • Identify three (3) African countries that can be considered democratic and where civil liberties are respected. Explain why you think these countries are democratic and that civil liberties are respected.




Question 1


The phone call


Musa, the marketing manager, was having a one-on-one meeting with Norma, one of the marketing agents in his office. They were discussing several issues important to the department when the phone rang. Musa ignored the phone and after three rings, Norma asked him why he did not answer the call. Musa paused and told Norma that whether the call was important or not, to him the meeting was important. Feeling valued, Norma smiled broadly and continued the conversation with new energy. Musa knew that, as a team leader, ‘what you pay attention to matters a great deal to your team’. To him, the motivation of the team members was of great value.


Adapted  from:  3  Leadership  Stories  to  Help  You  be  a  Better  Manager  [online]  Available from:


Read Chapter 12 of your prescribed textbook, and search additional academic websites for further studies done on leadership and motivation. Then, discuss the following statements and formulate your viewpoint by writing an essay:


Note: your essay should relate to the case study above. Please see the table below for details on mark allocation, layout, length and structure, among others.


For REF… Use: #getanswers2002023