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Do not vote for corrupt people, Tanzanians told

Discussion in 'Habari na Hoja mchanganyiko' started by PELE, Dec 26, 2009.

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    PELE JF-Expert Member

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    Do not vote for corrupt people, Tanzanians told

    By The guardian team

    26th December 2009

    The Anglican Church head Dr Valentino Mokiwa

    As the world marked Christmas Day yesterday, Tanzanians were yesterday challenged to make sure that corrupt people are not voted back into leadership in the coming general elections.
    Preachers at Christmas sermons across the country said corruption was the major cause of the country’s perpetual poverty despite the abundance of natural resources.
    Preaching at Minara Miwili, Shangani in the Isles, Zanzibar Roman Catholic Bishop Augustine Shao proposed compulsory civic education for the electorate as the best strategy to put in power leaders of their choice. Bishop Shao said corruption paved the way for irresponsible leaders bent on serving self interest instead of national interests.
    “People must be educated on ways to put in office candidates of their choice and refuse to be carried away by corrupt elements vying for leadership positions using ill-gotten money,” he said, adding that some corrupt leaders were opposed to the idea of civic elections as it would mean the end of their dirty games during elections.
    He questioned the rationale for endless poverty among Tanzanians citing statistics by the National Bureau of Statistics indicating that between 2001 and 2007 a total of 11.5 million Tanzanians were poor while current statistics show that 12.8 million people are wallowing in poverty.
    “The bottom line is that poverty is a result of corruption in the public sector. The best way to get rid of this is for the voters in the next general elections to make sure that all corrupt elements are uprooted.” Bishop Shao said.
    He added: “Enough is enough. We are tired of this never ending song of ‘ufisadi’. We need committed leaders who are prepared to serve the people and defend the resources of the country.”
    The cleric also spoke of the need for strengthened rule of law which, he said, should go hand-in-hand with responsibility and transparency, and that those entrusted to provide leadership had the obligation to adhere to the leadership ethics and not amass wealth.
    “It is shameful and unacceptable to see the natural resources of this country benefiting foreigners leaving the local population in dire poverty,” he said.
    The Bishop said while the economic assessment report by Transparency International indicated that Tanzania was the fourth producer of gold and diamond, poverty was a common phenomenon in the country.
    “No, this is not proper. There is nothing to be proud of in a country ranked number 102 out of 180 most corrupt countries in the world. Leaders should be chosen on merit not money,” he warned.
    For his part, Reverend Charles Lundu of the Anglican Church in Zanzibar echoed support to the fellow cleric saying that people’s leaders were judged through the degree of their commitment in serving the public.
    “I would be surprised to see that a leader appeared comfortable while his people are suffering. Let the Christmas festivals provide leaders with the opportunity to reflect on the hardships in life that people endured and work out joint strategies to change the situation. Education should be the priority for the people to move forward. Leaders need to serve the nation and not to wait for the nation to reward them,” Rev. Lundu explained.
    However, Christmas celebrations in Zanzibar appeared gloomy due to power cut that has seen the Isles descend into darkness since December 10, this year.
    Meanwhile, the outgoing Auxiliary Bishop of the Roman Catholic Church, Dar es Salaam Arch-Diocese, Dr. Methodius Kilaini, has called for serious prayers for free and fair elections slated for October next year.
    Preaching at the St.Joseph Cathedral in Dar es Salaam during Christmas Mass yesterday, Bishop Kilaini underlined the need for prayers before next general elections for the nation to get committed leaders.
    “I call upon all worshippers to seek divine intervention in the coming elections to make sure that leaders assuming the office are the right ones and are prepared to fight corruption and work closely with the people to end poverty. Families should come together for reconciliation and move ahead in peace and unity,” Bishop Dr. Kilaini pleaded.
    Bishop Kilaini has been transferred to Bukoba Diocese in the same capacity.
    “I am going to Kagera and continue serving God. This is like home going because I worked there for 37 years before coming to Dar es Salaam. Being the servant of God, I humbly accept the shift and I go to Kagera to strengthen God’s kingdom and preach the gospel. I will miss you,” he said to the congregation.
    Earlier in the Christmas midnight Mass in Dar es Salaam, the Dar es Salaam Archdioceses head, Polycarp Cardinal Pengo called on Tanzanians to pray to God so that the General Election next year is conducted well and peacefully.
    He expressed optimism that if all legally registered voters were given their constitutional right to cast their ballots, things would go very well.
    In his Christmas message, the Anglican Church head Dr Valentino Mokiwa called on leaders to work along with the people in looking for solutions that aim at making their lives better.