Jakaya Kikwete

Jakaya Kikwete

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Jakaya Kikwete

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Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete (born October 7, 1950) is the 4th and current President of the United Republic of Tanzania. Kikwete was born in Msoga, Bagamoyo District, Tanganyika in present day Tanzania. Kikwete was also the Chairperson of the African Union from 31 January 2008 to 2 February 2009.

Leadership and political career



Graduating with a degree in economics in 1975, he opted for a low-paying job as an executive functionary/officer of the ruling Party (TANU later CCM). This gave him the opportunity to work at the grassroots in rural regions and districts of Tanzania.

Kikwete sharpened his leadership acumen in the military. He first had basic military training at Ruvu National Service Camp (1972) and later underwent a basic officers course at the famous Tanzania Military Academy at Monduli, Arusha. This is Tanzania’s top military training institution. On successful completion of the course, he was commissioned as a lieutenant in 1976. He also undertook Company Commander's Course in 1983 at the same academy. In his military career, he rose to the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel. From 1984 to 1986, Kikwete was Chief Political Instructor and Political Commissar at the Military Academy. He retired from the military as a lieutenant-colonel when political pluralism was reintroduced to Tanzania in 1992 when he chose to become a full time politician. Prior to that, he was permitted to be both in the military and political leadership.

In elective Party politics, Kikwete started...
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