Jana tulimsikia Makamu Mwenyekiti wa CCM (Tanzania Bara) Pius Msekwa akizungumza na waandishi wa habari Dodoma kuhusu usuluhishi wa makundi ndani ya Chama Tawala. Pamoja na mengine Mzee Msekwa alisema eti neno "Ufisadi" lilianza kutumika baada ya kashfa ya Richmond kuibuka Bungeni! Si kweli. Baadhi yetu tunakumbuka neno hili lilipamba moto baada ya Dr. Slaa na wenzake kutoa "List of Shame" pale Mwembeyanga, Temeke. Hii imenikumbusha makala yangu niliyoandika kwenye Thisday Septermba 2007 kabla ya kashfa Richmod. Makala ilikuwa ndefu naikatisha. Soma hapo chini. FROM FAME TO SHAME It is generally said that if something quacks like a duck and walks like a duck, then it `must be a duck. Even if it is by sheer imitation! Let us loosely stretch this catchphrase a little bit further into our social-political context. If our work etiquette is not straightforward like that of the Mafiosi coupled with opulent lifestyle not commensurate with our obvious and transparent income the way the Mafiosi go about it, then we may say that we are also a Mafiosi of some sort. As individuals we may indulge in self denial and assume we are decent people but the society around us may, rightly or wrongly, characterize us being corrupt. Society does not always behave rationally and can be quite subjective. That is the fact of life. For those who are not familiar with the word "Mafiosi", stands for a gang leader of the notorious organized crime Italian Mafia (not our beautiful island) group. Forget about the fiction in the Godfather movies, the opposition is now telling us that the real Mafiosi ( mafisadi) are right here in our midst. In Bongoland! I have been keenly following the dust raised by Hon. Slaa, the Member of Parliament (MP) for Karatu regarding the infamous "list of shame" which includes the ‘who is who" in our country. The gravity of the allegations against these individuals is quite serious. We may allude to this as our own home grown and bred Mafiosi, If you like. True to form the Mafia, as a rule, does not take women onboard. Talk of gender balance! There is not a single woman on that list. If these allegations stand as they are, these famous citizens may fall from grace to shame. Like the good doctor said at Mwembe Yanga grounds, the "show" has been going on for long and time was now up to draw the curtains and give the main "actors" some break. His humble task was to resolve that "come what may" and put bell around the cat's neck. His action has sent shock waves across the country and beyond. .But who is this Dr. Slaa, anyway? Doesn't he realize that what is coming out his "foul mouth" is creating a lot of problems for all us and jeopardizing our god given peace, tranquility and cohesion in our country? Why is he giving some of our dear leaders headaches and sleepless nights? The poor fellows are now coming out in droves to address press conferences everyday of the week instead of toiling for the nation and when time allows enjoy Chipolopolo music, watch Ze Comedy and Man U! This man must be a very troublesome character. Well, the Curriculum Vitae (CV) of Dr. Slaaa seems to be a jerk of all trades. A casual glace at his CV states that apart from belling the cats the man can actually bell the leopards and lions as well! He can charm snakes out of the caves, catch the rats without traps, hunt crocodiles especially those in the habit of shedding tears, tame wild horses and yes, as a matador take the bull by the its horns, as he recently demonstrated at MwembeYanga in Temeke! His additional personal attributes include being an MP with impressive oratory skills, a Doctor of Philosophy holder ( a Nshomile up to no class ahead), a Padre ( god fearing man ). Loathe or dismiss him if you wish but the man has guts. However, this does not necessarily imply that we subscribe to what he stands for or espouses in totality. We just admire his courage. I, for instance, do not think that the current president is directly involved and may have benefited from fleecing this country. In my view, the President might have been part of the list because of accountability issues and not that he is also one of those whose hands are right in the middle of our national till! Like the biblical Thomas, I need to be more convinced before I loose confidence in the current president. As for the rest, well, the writing has been on the wall for a very long time for anyone who cares to see. The rumor making rounds in the country particularly in Dar Es Salaam is buzzing with financial sleaze gossip. Who has swindled what, where and how? It is all there at Vijiweni (jobless corners) if you can afford to be idle and disorderly once in a while. You may wonder how this kind of information gets to the public. It is easy. Most of the alleged culprits get betrayed by their wives, children, relatives, girlfriends and at times witchdoctors who usually quack and walk like ducks. People are not naïve. They know that behind these small ducks there are big ducks. To be candid there aren't many surprises in that "list of shame" except one. The inclusion of one particular Permanent Secretary (PS) caught many people unaware and some of us were shocked and awed by this revelation. Is it not this Senior Civil Servant who not so long ago publicly rebuked and showed the exit door the business delegation from Independent Power Tanzania Limited (IPTL) who wanted him to cut corners during the protracted negotiations with the Government? That act alone propelled him to high public regard and he has always been seen as being above board on corruption matters. The public is asking what has befallen this seemingly pious and amiable PS. Now listen to this. Corruption is like a pit latrine. When you visit the pit latrine you immediately notice change of environment. Those who use this facility can attest to this. At first you can hardly stand the pungent smell permeating through the air. However, as you settle down you gradually get accustomed to the foul smell and before you realize you might become part of that environment and end up getting polluted. In fact you can hardly notice the difference anymore until you make an exit back to the fresh air. Corruption has similar attributes. The more you stay in the corruption prone environment (juts like the pit latrine) you gradually start loosing your "immunity" and eventually get corrupted by assimilation. Perhaps this senior civil servant (PS) may have overstretched is his stay far too long in Government and got polluted in the process. But even if we assume that this particular PS is probably innocent, there is no chance that he could make it to the end (retirement) without being rolled in the mud. He should be smart enough to realize this. This must have come as an anticlimax for the poor PS. Call it occupational hazard if you like. So far there have been some noises in the media from some of the so called big time looters. Their attempts to extricate themselves from this political straight jacket have so far fallen on deaf ears and depending on which side you are, the message has been largely received with public cynicism. Not even the intercession from a long time senior cabinet minister could dissuade the press let alone tone down the debate from reaching the crescendo. Now the western donor community has joined the bandwagon and piling pressure on the Government to come clean on this mess. Some of the culprits coming out are suggesting, with tongue in cheek, that all evidence, if any, should be deposited with the relevant anti-graft institutions in this case, the Police and the Prevention and Combating of Corruption (PCCB) for further investigations. We may rhetorically ask Dr. Slaa why he did not start with the Police and PCCB after all. I believe in his wisdom the option of going public is far more effective than getting bogged down with legalities. If the whole President can stand up in broad daylight and tell the Public that he knows some people who are corrupt but he is putting them on notice to reform, who is Dr. Slaa to rush to the law?