A Journey, My Life, Speeches & Writings

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Author:Juma Volter Mwapachu
Year Published: 2023

Juma Volter Mwapachu (JV) has gifted us with a truly remarkable autobiography wherein he has introduced all of us to himself, his family, friends and colleagues in a compendium spanning seven decades and touching on many important personal, societal, national, regional and international events and processes. We are thus introduced to the antecedents of his family, from his clan’s origins among the Wadigo ethnic group of present-day Kenya, to his grandchildren, passing through the indefatigable activism of father Hamza Kibwana and deeply caring mother Juliana Volter, to his own children and their no-nonsense mother, Rose Omari. It is a steady and engaging account of a life full of effervescence, excitement, and stellar achievements, including the heady pre-independence days when Father Hamza and other nationalist colleagues were identifying and moulding a younger Julius Nyerere as a vital force in the nascent independence movement, to JV’s own development into a critical part player in national and regional political and diplomatic interventions that have left indelible marks. JV pays glowing tributes to those who he encountered in life and who have gone before him leaving him with deep emotions of irreparable loss, notably his beloved elder brother Harith Bakari-- evidently his soulmate and lifelong confidante, who leaps from the pages of this book as a sorely missed presence. Others include his younger brother Wendo Mtega, his son Harith-- gone way too early-- and older colleagues, Amon James Nsekela, and Reginald Abraham Mengi, as well as his illustrious brother-in-law, Mark Danhi Bomani. Vivid accounts of these personages afford the reader an appreciation of the strong filial and professional ties that the author entertained with those who were close to him and who immensely impacted his life. The reader also gets a taste of the special relationship JV had with J K Nyerere, who treated him as a doting father would treat a son, no less. These are flesh-and-blood pages written by a real person about real persons. They provide a peek into the colourful life of one of the most interesting Tanzanians – the future chief executive of the East African Community was at one stage a cop! -- who went hither and thither, basically leading a memorable life and teaching as much as learning, all along clearly enjoying every moment to the full. ‘My Journey’ is truly an unputdownable book -- informative, reflective and at times hilarious. I declare it must-read. Jenerali Ulimwengu Independent Tanzanian thinker and writer.