January Makamba

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January Makamba
January Makamba 2012.jpg
Deputy Minister of Communication,
Science and Technology
Assumed office
7 May 2012
Minister Makame Mbarawa
Preceded by Charles Kitwanga
Member of Parliament
for Bumbuli
Assumed office
November 2010
Preceded by William Shellukindo
Majority Unopposed
Personal details
Born (1974-01-28) 28 January 1974 (age 41)
Singida, Tanzania
Nationality Tanzanian
Political party CCM
Spouse(s) Ramona Urassa
Relations Yusuf Makamba (father)
Children 2
Residence Dar es Salaam
Alma mater St. John’s University
George Mason University
Religion Islam
Website www.januarymakamba.com

January Yusuf Makamba (born 28 January 1974) is a Tanzanian CCM politician and Member of Parliament for Bumbuli constituency since 2010. He is the Deputy Minister of Communication, Science and Technology.[1]

Early life and career[edit]

Makamba was born in Singida Region and is the eldest of four children. His father, Yusuf Makamba, a stalwart of the country's dominant ruling party, the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) and had served as its Secretary General. His mother, Josephine, is from Missenyi District in Kagera Region. He spent his early childhood in his ancestral home of Mahezangulu village in Lushoto District and at his maternal grandmother's village in Kagera Region, which was at the time invaded by Ugandan troops during the Uganda–Tanzania War.[2]

He was educated at Handeni and Galanos secondary schools in Tanga Region; and at Forest Hill High School. He attended Quincy College in Massachusetts, United States for a preliminary course before transferring to Saint John's University in Minnesota, where he majored in Peace Studies.[3] He then undertook an internship at the Carter Center,[4] before obtaining his MSc in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from the School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University in 2004.[5]

Upon his return to Tanzania, he joined the Foreign Ministry as a Foreign Service Officer (Grade II). Jakaya Kikwete, the Foreign Minister at the time would later on vie for the presidency in the 2005 election. Makamba joined his campaign team and traversed across the country visiting all the districts. Following Kikwete's landslide victory of over 80 percent, he was appointed as an aide to the President. His formal title was Personal Assistant to the President – Special Duties (PAP-SD); a position that he would serve for five years until 2010.[5]

Political career[edit]

Western Usambara in Lushoto district is Makamba's ancestral home

In 2010, he contested in the election as a Member of Parliament for his home constituency of Bumbuli and was elected unopposed.[6] In the 10th Parliament, he served as the Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee for Energy and Minerals.

In April 2011, he replaced Bernard Membe as CCM's Political Affairs and International Relations Secretary and served in this post until November 2012 when he was succeeded by Asha-Rose Migiro at the 8th National Congress of the CCM.[7] Makamba was also elected as one of the ten members of the National Executive Committee (NEC) from the mainland part of the country. He received the second highest number of votes (2,093).[8]

In May 2012, President Kikwete appointed him as the Deputy Minister of Communication, Science and Technology following a cabinet reshuffle. In July, he launched the Bumbuli Development Corporation, a personal initiative that would seek to supplement the government's effort in bringing development to his constituency.[9][10] In August 2014, he was nominated by Vodacom Tanzania CEO to participate in the Ice Bucket Challenge in order to raise awareness for obstetric fistula patients in Tanzania; or donate US$ 100.[11] Makamba decided to donate TSh 1 million (US$ 600) instead.[12]

In October 2014, Makamba was quoted advocating dictatorship as a means to end graft in politics.[13][14]

2015 presidential campaign[edit]

In March 2012, Makamba whilst being interviewed on the television talk show Mkasi, denied having any intention nor expectation in the presidency. He also suggested that the voting age and the presidential contestants' age be reduced to 16 and 35 respectively.[15]

In February 2014, Makamba along with five other party members were warned by the CCM's Central Committee not to engage in premature campaigns for the 2015 presidential election.[16] On 2 July 2014, he announced on BBC Swahili that he was 90% certain that he would contest in his party's primaries for the presidency.[17][18][19]

On 9 July 2014, President Kikwete whilst on a four day official tour of Tanga Region, addressed Makamba's constituents and praised their MP for his work. On his presidential ambition, Kikwete advised that he shouldn't 'force things' and that when the time comes, he would get the presidency.[20] Makamba clarified that Kikwete's remarks were taken out of context by the media and that he was supportive of his planned bid.[21]

His top priority will be on job creation and if elected, he will introduce a jobs bill that will need about $2 billion.[22] In January 2015, a book authored by Fr. Karugendo was launched titled 40 Questions 40 Answers: A Conversation with January Makamba.[23] Its preface was written by retired President Ali Hassan Mwinyi.[24]

Personal life[edit]

Makamba is a Muslim.[25][better source needed] He is married to Ramona and is the father of two children. He is an avid football fan and supports Coastal Union, Chelsea and Real Madrid in the Tanzanian, English and Spanish leagues.[26][27]

Honours and awards[edit]


  1. ^ "Member of Parliament CV". Parliament of Tanzania. Retrieved 24 February 2013. 
  2. ^ Makamba, January (December 2010). "My Story". www.januarymakamba.com. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "Student Profiles". St. John's University (Minnesota). Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  4. ^ "OBSERVING THE 2002 SIERRA LEONE ELECTIONS" (PDF). Page 4, Carter Center. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Alumni: J. Makamba". School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution. Retrieved 8 July 2014. 
  6. ^ "Promises, promises". The Economist. 28 October 2010. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  7. ^ "Fresh hope as CCM announces teams". The Citizen (Tanzania). 11 April 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  8. ^ Ng'Hily, Dickson (14 November 2012). "CCM`s new line-up in place". IPP Media. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  9. ^ Lugongo, Bernard (9 July 2012). "MP forms corporation to boost development in his constituency". The Citizen (Tanzania). Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  10. ^ Kellaway, Kate (26 August 2012). "New Africa: the politician fighting corruption in Tanzania". The Guardian. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  11. ^ "Vodacom Tanzania yaja na Fistula Ice Bucket Challenge". Michuzi Blog. 27 August 2014. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  12. ^ "Mheshimiwa Makamba Akubali Fistula #BongoIce". 28 August 2014. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 
  13. ^ Butahe, Fidelis; Yamol, Ibrahim (11 October 2014). "Makamba: Tunahitaji ‘udikteta’" [Makamba: We need a 'dictatorship'] (in Kiswahili). Mwananchi. Retrieved 8 December 2014. 
  14. ^ Makamba, Mhango (24 October 2014). "DICTATORSHIP? Go tell that to the birds, Mister Makamba!". Business Times. Archived from the original on 15 March 2015. Retrieved 8 December 2014. 
  15. ^ "Mkasi - S02E05 with January Makamba". Mkasi. March 2012. Retrieved 15 March 2015. 
  16. ^ "CCM penalises six over premature campaigns". IPP Media. 19 February 2014. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  17. ^ Kikeke, Saleem (3 July 2014). "January Makamba atangaza 'nia'" [January Makamba announces his intention] (in Kiswahili). BBC Swahili. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  18. ^ "Makamba: Why I want to be the next President of Tanzania". The Citizen (Tanzania). 4 July 2014. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  19. ^ Esther, Mngodo (4 July 2014). "How Twitter reacted when Makamba said he'll run for President". The Citizen (Tanzania). Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  20. ^ "JK on ambitious Makamba". The Citizen (Tanzania). 10 July 2014. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  21. ^ Mbashiru, Katare (11 July 2014). "Makamba: JK has no problem with my bid". The Citizen (Tanzania). Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  22. ^ Doya, David Malingha (28 October 2014). "Tanzanian President’s Former Aide Plans Bid to Succeed Him". Businessweek. Retrieved 12 December 2014. 
  23. ^ "Kitabu cha ‘urais’ wa Makamba". Mwananchi. 14 January 2015. Retrieved 16 January 2015. 
  24. ^ Kidanka, Christopher (17 January 2015). "Kikwete ‘groomer’ Mwinyi backs Makamba for the presidency". The EastAfrican. Retrieved 17 January 2015. 
  25. ^ Makamba's tweet on his religion on Twitter
  26. ^ "East Africa Today: An Iinterview with January Makamba - Part 1". 5 February 2014. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  27. ^ "January Makamba azungumzia maisha yake, siasa familia na Urais 2015 - Part 3" [January Makamba talks about his life, politics, family and the presidency] (in Kiswahili). Bongo5. 5 February 2014. Retrieved 11 July 2014. 
  28. ^ "List of 2013 Young Global Leaders Honourees from Sub-Saharan Africa" (PDF). World Economic Forum. March 2013. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  29. ^ "30th Anniversary Democracy Dinner". National Democratic Institute. 25 November 2011. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 
  30. ^ Gundan, Farai (31 January 2014). "The 10 Most Powerful Men In Africa 2014". Forbes. Retrieved 9 July 2014. 

External links[edit]