THE expression ‘Nguvu ya Soda’, which doesn’t quite fit the standard Kiswahili bill, is nonetheless one of the most familiar.
When the President John Magufuli-led government set in motion a series of measures to literally reset a derailed train on track, some cynically likened the zeal to the whizzing sound produced shortly after a soft drinks bottle has been opened, and vanishes after a few seconds.
On the contrary, positive, uncontestable results are emerging on grand corruption, embezzlement of State funds, maladministration, lethargy at work stations, and ethical breaches, being tackled resolutely.
Public confidence in the government – to whichever party someone belongs, is consistently rising. But, as we periodically stress, success can be registered, swiftly, and on a satisfactory scale, if the give-and-take approach, is applied voluntarily and rigidly.
The government is enjoined to serve the people, but they should reciprocate by being law-abiding, and playing complimentary roles for the nation’s collective good.
Last Monday, the Home Affairs Minister, Mr Mwigulu Nchemba, stressed compliance with that requirement for riders and passengers while the machines are in motion, warning that non-compliance would invite legal repercussions. He was addressing bodaboda, shuttle bus (daladala) crew and cyclists in Shinyanga.
The sentiments are the latest in a series, which is as well, because the helmets constitute a safety precaution, as many lives that are senselessly lost could be saved.
Here’s one of the areas where the give-and-take principle should rigidly apply, but is undermined by quite many defiant passengers, but who are obeyed by boda boda operators desperate for an income. Some of the operators, who should be pacesetters in complying with traffic safety regulations, are notorious for bending the law.
Public praise for to the government for its zeal in fixing critical vices like grand corruption is praiseworthy, as giving credit where it is due is a mark of human decency. That same public should however play its part by being on the right side of the law, to enable the government serve them better.
By doing relatively simple things like wearing helmets, and keeping the prospects of becoming part of the dead-and-injured road accident statistics, the government would have more energy in reserve, to expend on far more critical issues like taming corrupt and unethical