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CCM: No need for JK`s help on Z`bar stalemate

Discussion in 'Jukwaa la Siasa' started by tibwilitibwili, Mar 4, 2008.

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    tibwilitibwili Senior Member

    Mar 4, 2008
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    2008-03-04 09:59:30
    By Lydia Shekighenda and Correspondent Felister Peter

    Chama Cha Mapinduzi Secretary General Yusuf Makamba has said the ongoing
    peace talks between his ruling party and the opposition Civic United Front
    (CUF) are on track and do not need a push from President Jakaya Kikwete.

    He has also ruled out the possibility of concluding the negotiations by
    the end of this month as recently demanded by the CUF youth wing.

    He said in an interview with this paper yesterday that CUF was going too
    far in seeking the president`s intervention in the negotiations ``because
    the committee formed to work on the issue has not failed to accomplish its

    Makamba noted that all issues related to the Zanzibar political impasse
    were being ably handled by the committee, which comprises six members from
    either side and is co-chaired by the two parties` secretaries general.

    ``We are proceeding well with the talks, guided by the five terms of
    reference we were given when we started.

    We are not stuck and therefore see no logic of involving President Kikwete
    in the negotiations at this stage,`` he said.

    He further explained that the two rival sides have worked closely together
    in handling ``this highly delicate and sensitive matter``, with members of
    the committee normally updating their parties on whatever progress is made
    or problems experienced.

    ``We will only ask for President Kikwete`s intervention when we see that
    we are surely heading for failure,� stated an upbeat Makamba.

    He said the committee was working without a timeframe ``largely because we
    are expected to discuss each agenda item thoroughly and keep our
    respective parties posted before proceeding with other items``.

    ``There is just no possibility of concluding these complex negotiations by
    the end of this month because they were dealing with an issue that
    involves an entire nation and not merely the CCM and CUF secretaries
    general and members,`` he added.

    Members of the CUF youth wing at the weekend gave President Kikwete one
    month to resolve the Zanzibar political impasse, saying they would
    otherwise seek ``popular intervention``. However, Makamba said the
    ultimatum came from people ignorant of what was actually going on.

    ``As I speak, the negotiations are going on in Zanzibar. We appeal to CUF
    members and the Tanzanian public to be patient. We are right on course, as
    far as our talks are concerned,`` he pointed out.

    Contacted for comment on the matter, CUF Deputy Secretary General Wilfred
    Lwakatare reiterated his party`s stance and called on President Kikwete to
    intervene and resolve the deadlock ``with minimum delay``. However, he
    gave no ultimatum.

    He explained that he saw no reason for delays in �putting this
    drawn-out impasse behind us when this is actually a matter that can be
    resolved within no time``.

    ``The point is that people want to get satisfactory feedback on what is
    being discussed because it has taken too long,`` added Lwakatare, noting
    that the country was approaching the next (2010) general elections while
    still dealing with a problem relating to the 2000 general election.

    A section of the opposition camp and members of the public have recently
    been calling on President Kikwete to employ the ``same magic`` he used in
    helping bring the bloody post-election crisis in Kenya to a swift but
    peaceful end in similarly ending the deadlock in Zanzibar.

    The stalemate revolves around long-running claims by CUF, the major
    opposition party in the Isles, that CCM massively rigged the multiparty
    general elections in Zanzibar in 2000 and 2005. However, the ruling party
    has always vehemently denied ever stealing votes.

    SOURCE: Guardian