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Clerics call for end to graft, impinity

Discussion in 'Jukwaa la Siasa' started by BAK, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. BAK

    BAK JF-Expert Member

    Apr 13, 2009
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    2009-04-13 08:17:00

    Clerics call for end to graft, impinity

    By The Citizen team

    Christian leaders urged more efforts to end corruption yesterday, and called on authorities to fight the impunity enjoyed by politicians in the country.

    In their Easter messages to mark the day of Jesus' resurrection as recounted in the Bible, church leaders said corruption continued to be a major obstacle to fighting poverty.

    Delivering their messages to thousands of Christians at various churches across the country, church leaders said the provision of social services to the majority was still very poor while corrupt officials were not punished.

    At St Joseph Church in Dar es Salaam, auxiliary Bishop Methodias Kilaini of the Dar es Salaam diocese urged discretion among people in voting politicians into power.

    He said most politicians were motivated to seeking public office by their desire for personal aggrandisement not determination to serve people.

    Calling on politicians to be selfless in performing their duties, Bishop Kilaini said: "Leaders must learn to serve and not desire to be served."

    He added: "A good leader is dedicated to ensuring public good and not aim at accumulating his own wealth."

    Bishop Alfred Malunda of the Njombe Catholic diocese where national prayers were held yesterday said political leaders should set good examples to inspire hope in efforts to develop the country.

    The deputy speaker of parliament, Ms Anne Makinda, was among the hundreds of christians who attended the service during which Bishop Malunda challenged politicians to "be honest and always be ready to tell the truth" on national issues.

    He said this year's Easter celebrations were themed around hope and called for national unity in fighting vices that are detrimental to development.

    For his part, Bishop Malunda said he welcomed the steps taken of late by the Government to prosecute people suspected of looting public funds.

    He praised the media for doing a "commendable job" in highlighting matters that were crucial for the development of the country.

    To political leaders, the bishop said: "Be dedicated to the cause of your duties; be willing to face people and tell them the truth even if it is not pleasant."

    Reiterating the message of hope preached by Pope Benedict XVI during his recent tour of Africa, Bishop Malunda said there were signs of development in the country and continent in general.

    "People should not despair. Even with these problems we hear about in Africa, there are still significant signs of hope, there are efforts by the governments to fight corruption, diseases and hunger," he said.

    Pope Benedict also condemned corruption and urged good governance in Africa during his visit last month.

    At Mji Mkongwe in Zanzibar, on the eve of Easter, Zanzibar Catholic diocese Bishop Augustine Shao said people should desist from demonising all politicians.

    "Recently there has emerged a culture of condemning every wealthy person as corrupt or that he or she is a thief," he said.

    "People should not rush to condemn others for alleged corruption before the courts of law proves their case."

    Bishop Shao said while he did not condone corruption he considered it immoral when people judged others based on their material possessions.

    He also urged the media to report responsibly and professionally and desist from "dramatising the country's problems."

    He said the media had a role to tell people the truth and strive to always provide a platform for change to the people and their political leaders.

    In addition, the cleric decried what he said was a growing desire for wealth among Tanzanians at the expense of morality.

    This, he said, had contributed much to corruption at all levels of society in the country.

    He urged "moral leadership" and the formulation of policies that help alleviate not worsen poverty by the Government.

    And speaking on elections next year, he said politicians should not waste people's time campaigning but should also focus on helping fight poverty.

    He said: "All this time that is being wasted on campaigning for an election that will be held at the end of next year must be used to help people by finding solutions to get them out of the current economic crisis."

    In Tanga, Christians were reminded to imitate Jesus' life of love and practise it among one another.

    The bishop of Tanga Anglican Church, Dr Phillip Baji, condemned discrimination and the killings of albinos which has rocked the country.

    Delivering his Easter message at St Augustine church, he said noone had the right to kill another person and urged peace among people of different colours and backgrounds.

    He also spoke on the global economic crisis and urged Christians to play a key role in addressing the current problems caused by the recession.

    In Serengeti, Easter messages also centred on corruption and the need to address the poverty problem.

    At one service, Father Aloycius Magabe of Mugumu town parish in Serengeti district told his congregation that corruption had retarded the country's development.

    He said the vice as well as the killings of albinos had tarnished the image of the country and efforts should be made to stop them.

    (Reported by Orton Kiishweko,Salma Said, Borhani Yakubu and Anthony Mayunga)