US official ends Dar tour of duty, a month after travel advisory

Saturday June 20 2020

Dr Inmi Patterson, outgoing US charge d’affaires at a past event. PHOTO | COURTESY


US Charge d’Affaires to Tanzania Dr Inmi Patterson has bade farewell to Tanzanians in a video message on the embassy’s official Facebook page, saying she will be leaving the country soon.

In her farewell speech, delivered in Kiswahili, Dr Paterson said that during her tour of duty she had an opportunity to know the country better because she visited many parts of the country.

“I have learnt that although we (Tanzanians and Americans) carry different passports, we share the same dream and that we are all human beings,” she said.

Dr Patterson’s farewell message comes almost four weeks after Tanzania’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs summoned her after the US Embassy issued travel advisory saying Tanzania’s Covid-19 situation was alarming.

Neither the US Embassy nor the Tanzania Foreign Affairs Ministry responded to our queries on whether Dr Patterson’s appointment period had come to an end or whether her departure was related to the travel advisories issued against the country.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs said at the time the country has advised the US embassy against issuing advisories without contacting Tanzanian authorities, “who are ready to cooperate by giving reliable information.”


In the advisory, the US embassy said the Tanzanian government does not give enough updates on the coronavirus situation and the country’s hospitals were overwhelmed.

On Thursday, the US embassy in Dar es Salaam refuted unconfirmed news that Dr Patterson had left the country.

However, a few hours later, the farewell message by the Charge d’Affaires who presented her credentials three years ago, appeared on social media.

Also posted was a message detailing financial assistance the US has extended to Tanzania in the past 20 years, most of it to the health sector.

The post said that on May 22, the US donated $2.4 million to Tanzania’s health sector, particularly to boost capacity for optional diagnostics and risk communication.

“Another $1.9 million as diverted Covid-19 mitigation efforts making the total assistance to be $5.3 million,” it says.