WFP DEMARCHE: TANZANIA DECLINES TO BE A COMPROMISE CANDIDATE

Identifier: 
07DARESSALAAM225

UNCLAS DAR ES SALAAM 000225

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE
SIPDIS

DEPT IO/EDA FOR SKOTOK
ALSO AF/E FOR B YODER; AF/RSA FOR MHARPOLE
USUN ROME FOR WFP STAFF
ADDIS FOR AU MISSION

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAID, AORC, PREL, WFP, TZ
SUBJECT: WFP DEMARCHE: TANZANIA DECLINES TO BE A COMPROMISE
CANDIDATE

REF: STATE 017145

1. (SBU) Ambassador Begum Taj, Head of the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs Multilateral Division, told PolCouns February
15 that Tanzania would not be interested in standing as a
compromise candidate country for the Vice Presidency of the
World Food Program Executive Board. Ambassador Taj said that
Tanzania's long-standing policy as a member of the Southern
African Development Community (SADC) is to work with other
members of SADC and the Government of Zimbabwe (GOZ) to coax
the GOZ to alter their internal policies that continue to
negatively impact the citizens of Zimbabwe. "SADC members do
not believe that isolating Zimbabwe is the way to achieve
that goal," Taj noted.

2. (SBU) PolCouns stressed the Vice Presidency of WFP which
leads to the Presidency in 2008, is a global, not a regional,
responsibility. The GOZ has repeatedly misused the WFP food
distribution system within Zimbabwe, is not concerned about
the food security of its citizens, and has taken advantage of
WFP and Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) fora to
propagate its own political ends. Although it may be
southern Africa's turn to assume the WFP Vice Presidency,
there are other southern African nations with a track record
of responsibly providing food security for their people and
cooperating internationally, which are qualified to serve on
the WFP Board. Ambassador Taj said she understood that the
Africa group had selected Zimbabwe because it was the GOZ's
"turn" to serve on the WFP Executive Board and that the
Government of Tanzania would respect that choice.
RETZER