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At the rehashed electoral law, enforcement is the weakest link!

Discussion in 'Uchaguzi Tanzania' started by Rutashubanyuma, Sep 25, 2010.

  1. Rutashubanyuma

    Rutashubanyuma JF-Expert Member

    Sep 25, 2010
    Joined: Sep 24, 2010
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    (By Rutashubanyuma Nestory- A public policy analyst based in Arusha.)

    A partisan logjam embroiling the rehashed electoral bill has obfuscated the real issues relevant in the advancement of good governance in this nation. The existing electoral regime, despite its umpteenth misgivings, is shimmering with some gems too.

    On one hand, enactment of good governance laws paves way for a political terrain propitious to a free and fair election but that legislative touché alone is inherently inadequate to secure parity. On the other hand, weaker institutions of governance shouldered with the pannier of ensuring fair play are dangerously attenuated if in the eyes of the electorate their legitimacy is sourced from cronyism and political nepotism.

    This may narrate why despite an escalating growth of numbers of institutions of governance a resemblance of good governance remains a mirage. In a more exuding telltale, we have laws requiring public servants to blab what is causing a sudden bulge in their personal purses – during their helm of holding public dockets- in order to gauge how deep they have sunk their cusped incisors in our public coffers but the implementation of this seminal law is left to the whimsical indulgences of the targeted group!

    A pertinent institution of governance is not even peeved by these scofflaws and in a worst case scenario that institution blames the very legislative act - which has breathed statutory life into her body in the first place – for being a drag-down! Equally, the electoral commission is littered with laws which can disenfranchise both voters and candidates in equal footing through convenient but narrow interpretations of the electoral law.

    In the most recent case study of Mbeya by-election, a failure to submit an affidavit signed according to a parochial interpretation of the electoral law was in its own a sufficient and fulfilling cause to delist an opposition candidate brandishing a credible chance of winning that election!

    A cumbersome internal procedure of appeals within the ambits of electoral commission has always been cited by apologists to be an atonement for all and sundry aggrieved by the commission's basement adjudications!

    Moreover, at TAKUKURU, the House had ordered the executive to axe a CEO there but despite vociferous ululations from the former the latter has brushed aside with aplomb any clamours to dislodge the CEO there! Paradoxically, at a time the House was admitting defeat in Dodoma to send Dr. Edward Hosea packing, this Takukuru CEO was elsewhere officiating at the inauguration of one of many of Takukuru white elephants now gentrifying almost every nook and cranny of our urban centres.

    It seems Takukuru's corporate plan is engendered at winning the war on graft by cozening our hearts and minds through deceptive perceptions of dotting every urban centre with costly ostentatious structures labeled with anti-graft sceptres as if by that sleight of a hand graft is or will be pared! Curiously, when Dr. Hosea was fielding questions from bemused reporters about Radargate his responses were hedgy, snobbish and impudent. Dr. Hosea shrugged at the Radargate as a UK affair – and, by doing so - he defused the fact that the alleged crime was planned and executed here!

    To make matters even worse, he focused his homily upon the beneficent gesture of the British government of window dressing instead of avouching Takukuru's commitment to nab the perpetrators and their accomplices of this heinous crime. Part of Dr. Hosea success at subduing the House over his Richmond infractions was to initiate and embolden systemic intimidation tactics at hapless Mps dogged with false expense invoicing.

    In a quid pro quo token, Takukuru got the MPs off the hook with the House condoning the executive obstinacy to dismiss Dr. Hosea. Mps are resisting a new electoral bill because; on paper, it abridges electoral malpractice but Mps need not worry, at all.

    Behind the smokescreen of a semblance of providential fairplay which this law is all about lies a concerted stratagem to hoodwink the electorate that the coming election will be free and fair while that is a chimera lurking to abase us. The house should okay the new law knowing its enforcement will be its weakest link.