Saturday, 23 November 2013

‘Arusha is overpopulated’


Arusha Rural-urban migration is to blame for the fast growth of Arusha city, an official warned early this week.

Arusha. Rural-urban migration is to blame for the fast growth of Arusha city, an official warned early this week.
Newly-elected deputy mayor Prosper Msofe said the uncontrolled influx of people into the town has already had a serious impact on delivery of key socioeconomic services.
“Arusha city faces socioeconomic problems arising from rapid growth of urban population attributed to natural growth and rural-urban migration,” he told urban development stakeholders.
Mr Msofe, who was appointed deputy mayor last week, said Arusha city has one of the highest population densities among the urban centres in Tanzania. He was elected Daraja Mbili ucouncillor on the opposition Chadema ticket in May this year.
“It has the highest population density of 3,040 per square kilometre”, he said at the start of a week long workshop for mayors and urban councillors from Somaliland.
Although detailed figures from the National Population and Household Census held last year have not been released, Arusha city is estimated to have a population well exceeding 500,000.
The city more than tripled its span two years ago to 208 square kilometres when some wards in the neighbouring Arumeru District were hived into the town authority.
The deputy mayor attributed the influx of new comers to the city to the tourism business which has made the city the hub of the industry with mushrooming hotels, lodges as well as food and entertainment joints.
“Secondly the city is the main market for tanzanite minerals from Mererani”, he said and added; “Speaking of Arusha as a tourist city is not enough. The city also has cultural diversity.” THIS makes it an attractive destination for tourists, traders and various businesses.