TANZANIA (eTN) – With leading headlines in bold, all Tanzanian daily newspapers published in their Thursday editions news about the re-election of Barack Obama looking for his final term as President of the United States to focus on Africa.
Skipping from local news and domestic issues on their front pages, a dozen leading Tanzanian dailies printed in their front pages news about Obama’s re-election, quoting views from various sources about the winning of Obama.
Other than newspapers and electronic media, jubilant groups took positions in public buses, bars, eating-out places, and college campuses to discuss the re-election of Obama, looking to see him paying more attention on Africa, his ancestral continent.
Groups of people took time watching televised images from shops and bars to follow-up on the Obama speech taking place far away on the other side of the world.
Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete congratulated US President Barack Obama for winning a re-election in Tuesday’s elections, saying Tanzania hopes to see more ties with the United States.
“On behalf of the government and the people of the United Republic of Tanzania, and indeed, on my own behalf, I wish to send you and through you to the democratic party many compliments for the victory,” said the President in a congratulatory message to Obama.
Mr. Kikwete said President Obama’s re-election was a clear indication of the trust and confidence that Americans have in his exemplary leadership.
“As you prepare to assume the leadership of your country for the new term, I would like to assure you personally and on behalf of my government that we will continue to work very closely to boost the existing relationship between our two countries,” he said.
But most exciting was the newspapers’ headlines and big, colored photos of Obama on Thursday, informing the readers about Obama’s victory and the way forward.
The Obama news, analysis, and comments dominated the 12 Tanzanian leading dailies printed in English and lingua franca, Swahili. All papers devoted their front pages to cover Obama’s victory over Mitt Romney.
This eTN reporter observed a big turnout of people watching live coverage of Mr. Obama addressing a gathering from the US through CNN, Al-Jazeera, and BBC channels, as well as being televised through local television stations in the Tanzanian capital city of Dar es Salaam.
In Kenya, several people danced the whole of Wednesday night to celebrate Obama’s re-election, looking at a fresh start for his policies on Africa, the poorest continent in the world.
Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga said Obama’s re-election would bring and re-ignite a new hope to the world, especially in Africa, while President Mwai Kibaki said Kenya, as always, was proud of associating and cooperating with Obama.
Across the African continent, South African President Jacob Zuma issued a statement congratulating Obama, while expressing his personal optimism towards closer cooperation between the US and South Africa.
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan welcomed Obama’s victory, saying the people of the United States appreciated his (Obama’s) leadership and very good work he has done in the past four years towards ending global economic depression and fostering global peace and security.
Obama is seen as an African child born in another continent. While his popularity is still higher across Africa, critics of his administration are skeptical about his White House policies on Africa.
In accordance with African traditions and norms, Obama is more African than American, a reason which made him pull big crowds of supporters from every corner of this continent.