A live music band and groups of artistes from Tanzania People’s Defence Forces (TPDF) yesterday coloured the commissioning of the graduands of the officer cadet course held at the State House in Dar es Salaam.
The celebration, beamed live on local radio and television stations was graced by the Commander-in- Chief of the Armed Forces, President John Magufuli. ‘Wananchi’ turned up early and braved the long and tedious queues as they went through security checks to get into the venue and occupy the terraces.
There was tight security as screening took place on the relatives of the envisaged commissioned officers and other guests as they entered the entrance gate. Officers from TPDF who were seated in a special tent were shining in their military attire as they waited for the head of state to officiate at the function. Journalists from different media were not given any seat.
They later opted to remain standing for almost three hours. TPDF who organised the function, had also brought in some military groups of dancers who sang much to the delight of members of the public who turned up for the function, that also entertained the chief guest, Mr Magufuli.
The president is usually the last person to enter the venue and the first to leave it, perhaps for security reasons. This means whoever wanted to leave could not. At exactly 10.25 a.m, Mr Magufuli arrived at the grounds set for the commissioning of the military officers, just outside the gates of State House.
Dressed in a blue suit, the Magogoni office bearer was seen in a jovial mood as he walked straight to the podium. He could be seen singing along as the national anthem was played by a special guard of honour mounted by members of the TPDF and the graduands of the officer cadet course.
Immediately after the National Anthem, the president inspected the guard of honour and later granted awards to the best five trainees before granting commission to 165 graduands of the officer cadet course.
The officers who had an opportunity to shake a hand with the Commander-in-Chief of Armed Forces were the overall best trainee Mr Said Idd who is a graduate of Bachelor of Business Administration.
Others and their qualifications in brackets were Mr Shahani Majid (Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering); Mr Hassan Mbaga (Bachelor of Science in Land Management and Evaluation; Mr Lucas Ntamakusau (a Kenyan) (Bachelor of Purchasing and Supply Management) and the only woman, Mariam Kayanda (Bachelor of Mass Communication).
Later, the guests received colourful entertainment from various military groups and the famous Mwenge Band as it started to spot with rain shortly before the function ended. The function was also attended by Vice-President Samia Suluhu Hassan and Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa.