Based on the philosophy of human equality and African Unity which Mwalimu Nyerere stood for and believed in, the paramount objective of the Foundation is to promote Peace, Unity and People Centred Self Reliant Development in Tanzania, in Africa and throughout the world. The Foundation promotes the study of the principles adopted and practiced by Mwalimu Julius Kambarage Nyerere, throughout his life.
In furtherance of the aforesaid objectives, the Foundation also;
- Promotes and facilitates dialogue among the people and Governments of Africa on ideas and action oriented proposals on Peace, Unity and People Centred Development.
- Promotes and facilitates learning and sharing of experiences among governments, non-governmental organizations and individuals on issues of Peace, Unity and People Centred Development.
- Promotes and participates in action oriented programmes and projects that further the objectives of the Foundation.
- Collects, analyzes and disseminates information relevant to the pursuit of Peace, Unity and People Centred Development.
- Engages in appropriate revenue – generation and fund raising activities in support of the Foundation’s work and activities.
In his own words Mwalimu Julius K. Nyerere explained the main objectives and the purpose of the Foundation as follows;
” ……There are many good and honest people who believe that those ideas, which in this country are associated with my name are now dead and should be properly buried. You will not be surprised to hear that I disagree! Great ideas do not die so easily; they continue nagging and every human society in history ignores them at its own peril. And I can say this without inhibition or pretending modesty because in every real sense they are not my ideas. I never invented them. I am simply a believer , like many other believers, in the world and in human history. I believe in equality and dignity of all human beings and the duty to serve, their well being as well as their freedom in a peaceful and cooperative society. I am an ardent believer in the freedom of welfare of the individual. As I speak to you now I ma asserting my own individuality. But I also believe that what gives humanity to our individuality is a sense of community and fellowship with all other human beings where they may be. ‘Binadamu wote ni ndugu zangu’ That was not something that was said lightly. It came from a firm and profound belief in the nature and dignity of the Animal called the Human Being.”
He continued to state the following;
” I repeat:those ideas are not mine; but I am a believer. I have articulated and I will continue to articulate them with passion. So I can only be thankful that an institution established to promote Peace, Unity and People centred development in Africa has the promotion of those ideas among its objectives.”
He therefore said;
” If the Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation is to be useful to the people of this country and Africa, its real job will be to hold fast to the principles themselves, and on the basis of those principles to judge the past in its own context, and to make practical recommendations about the future in the light of the circumstance and knowledge currently prevailing. In trying to do these things. it will need to be as objective as possible.
Individual and institutional honesty and scholastic integrity: these must mark all the work of this institution. Dialogue among people and governments, like the sharing of experiences, action oriented programmes for peace, unity and people centred development, and the dissemination of information: these are are the main purpose of this Foundation.” (Ref: Quotation from Speech made at Fundraising Dinner at The Kilimanjaro Hotel, Dar es Salaam, 14 September 1996.)