Background/History of Vallejo/Bagamoyo Sister City Relationship

Augustus and Carol Browning were among the first proponents for the creation of a sister city relationship with an African city. As early as 1989, they wrote of their willingness to work with the Commission in the selection process. With the help of leaders in the Black Community they rallied local support that led to the recommendation of Bagomoyo as a desired sister city. The Commission supported the relationship. On November 30, 1993, Commission Chair Robert Sather presented the Commission’s recommendation to the City Council. After hearing supporting presentations from Carol and Augustus Browning and Justice Buda, the Council, with Mayor Tony Intintoli presiding, approved the relationship with Bagamoyo.

The distance and remoteness of Bagamoyo from Vallejo have presented problems in maintaining an active relationship. Airfares are expensive and beyond the reach of most locals in each city. It was not until October 11, 1998 that we had our first official visit with the arrival of Tanzanian Ambassador to the United States, Mustafa Nyang’anyi and Foreign Affiars Minister Jakaya Kikwete in Vallejo to confirm the relationship. They were received by Mayor Gloria Exline and other dignitaries including Frank Jackson, President of the Vallejo Chapter of the N.A.A.C.P., at a reception at the Naval and Historical Museum, where, on October 12, the memorandum of understanding linking the two cities was signed. The guests were given local tours arranged by Commission Chair Dinah Villanueva and Buck Kamphausen. Jakaya Kikwete would later be elected and serve as President of Tanzania. In that capacity, he was in the Bay Area in 2009 and, through Ambassador Ombeni Sefue, contacted Commission Chair Dinah Villanueva to express a continuing interest in the relationship.

In November 1999, Commissioner Carol Browning made the first official visit and fact finding trip to Bagamoyo. She was warmly received and royally treated, but somewhat overwhelmed by the poor economic conditions and the problems in providing basic civic services like water and sewage as well as elementary education for the children. On her return, she gave a complete report to the City Council. In February 2001, the Council approved a gift of $5,000 to Bagamoyo to help with their humanitarian projects. Commissioner Dan Coleman delivered the gift to Ambassador Mustafa N’Yanganyi at the Embassy in Washington.

One November 1, 2009, the Bagamoyo District Council voted an expression of thanks to Vallejo for efforts to continue the relationship. On December 7th Tanznian Ambassador Ombeni Sefue, accompanied by Emissary Suleiman Saleh, made an official visit to Vallejo. Hhe was greeting by Mayor Osby Davis and Commission Chair Dinah Villanueva and given a special presentation by Buck Kamphausen.

On December 10, 2110, Ambassador Mwanaidi Sinare Maajar made an official visit to Vallejo. She was received by Mayor Osby Davis, Commission Chair Dinah Villanueva, and Association President Paul Ligda and feted at a Christmas banquet at Zio Fraedo’s Restaurant.