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Kikwete comes under fire over graft suspects

Discussion in 'Jukwaa la Siasa' started by Zak Malang, Sep 27, 2010.

  1. Zak Malang

    Zak Malang JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Kikwete comes under fire over graft suspects
    By Bernard James,
    The Citizen

    Chama Cha Mapinduzi’s commitment to fighting corruption has come under scrutiny, with critics accusing its presidential candidate, Mr Jakaya Kikwete, of publicly embracing individuals facing graft allegations.

    Political analysts were concerned about the legal, political and moral implications of President Kikwete’s decision to involve in his campaigns for the October 31 General Election politicians charged with corruption or abuse of office.

    At a campaign rally in Iringa earlier this week, a former secretary general of the Tanzania Football Federation, Mr Frederick Mwakalebela, who has been charged with bribing voters in the party’s primary poll, was called to the podium in front of Mr Kikwete, to declare his support for the party, in a show that has raised questions over CCM’s stand on corruption in elections.

    Mr Mwakalebela, who won the party nomination, was axed by the National Executive Committee (NEC) in favour of the outgoing MP, Kilimanjaro regional commissioner Monicah Mbega, accused of bribing voters. He denied the charge in a court in Iringa.

    A former Governor of the Bank of Tanzania and founder of the opposition party, Chadema, Mr Edwin Mtei, recently criticised President Kikwete for urging Rombo constituents to re-elect Mr Basil Mramba. The former Finance minister is currently on trial for alleged abuse of office that caused the government a loss of Sh11 billion.

    President Kikwete invited Mr Mramba to the dais at a campaign rally and asked the people to vote for him, describing him as “an old hoe that does not rust”.

    Mr Mtei said the President should not “go around asking the people to vote for anyone, who has been taken to court over corruption allegations, if he wishes to send a strong signal that he is committed to waging war against the vice”.

    Former Infrastructure minister Andrew Chenge, who resigned after being implicated by the UK Serious Fraud Organisation of involvement in the radar purchase scandal, was cleared by CCM to defend his Bariadi West seat. He has, however, not been charged with any offence relating to corruption.

    The chairman of Agenda 2000 Participation, a non- governmental organisation promoting democracy and good governance, Mr Moses Kulaba, said: “Though these people have not been convicted, embracing them publicly could have far reaching implications in the war against graft”.

    He added: “In the public view, I don’t think they deserve the honour of being touted by the President because their credibility is still a subject of scrutiny.”

    He said the President should have distanced himself from the suspects until the cases against them were determined, “because in politics, it’s the public opinion that counts more”.

    Mr Kulaba added: “Had I been a presidential adviser, I would have told him to stay away from the suspects for the law to fully take its course.”

    He wondered why CCM had turned to Mr Mwakalebela after rejecting him over alleged corruption. “So what message are they sending to the public? For his own credibility, the President should campaign without necessarily involving such people.”

    The CCM action, he added, would only discourage anti-corruption bodies.
    But a long serving law lecturer at the University of Dar es Salaaam, Prof Chris Peter Maina, said there was nothing legally wrong with what the President had done as the individuals had not been convicted.

    He cited Section 13 (6) (b) of the Constitution, which stipulates that “No person charged with a criminal offence shall be treated as guilty of the offence until proved guilty of that offence”.

    Prof Maina added: “I don’t think we will be doing justice to condemn those facing criminal offences before they are found guilty. I think they have the right to fully participate in public affairs until convicted. If we deny them such opportunities, what will happen if they are found not guilty?”

    He said condemning such people prematurely could have “very serious implications, since in politics it is possible for rival individuals to employ dirty tricks to weaken their opponents”.

    But some critics raised the issue of moral acceptability.

    The executive director of the Tanzania Media Women’s Association (Tamwa), Ms Ananilea Nkya, said: “I was shocked when my President went to publicly to solicit for votes for corruption suspects.”

    Ms Nkya, the winner of the 2010 Tanzania Woman of Courage award for promoting equality, opportunity and justice for women and girls, charged that some credible leaders were being compromised for political interests.

    “Political parties can die but Tanzania must remain with leaders of integrity. Let’s not compromise the integrity of our nation for the sake of securing a big number of MPs. This is like digging a grave for ourselves.”

    Ms Nkya challenged leaders to borrow a leaf from the book of founding President Julius Nyerere, who, in the 1995, citing corruption allegations, influenced CCM to reject a candidate it had picked to vie in his home constituency in Musoma. Mr Nyerere had declared than that he would not agree to be led by a corrupt individual.

    But CCM’s deputy secretary for propaganda and publicity, Mr Richard Tambwe Hizza, defended the involvement of the graft suspects in election campaigns.

    He said the enactment of the 2007 anti-corruption law confirmed that CCM was committed to fighting graft.

    He also said the re-introduction of nominations to pick the party’s flag bearers was another indication of its anti-corruption stance. Mr Hizza said it would be unconstitutional to “block the uncondemned”.

    He said former TFF secretary general Mwakalebela had every right to reaffirm his loyalty to the party.

    Two years ago, Mr Kikwete, while on a state visit to Mozambique, told Tanzanians living in that country that his government would only take people to court after ascertaining fully that they were involved in what they were being accused of.

    A Dar es Salaam businessman, Mr Mathew Budodi, said: “The President has apparently forgotten his own pledge by associating directly with those who have been taken to court over corruption claims. Are they clean now that they are being fronted to win votes?”
  2. M

    Msharika JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    CCM can not survive with ot grand corruption suspects.
  3. Mzee Mwanakijiji

    Mzee Mwanakijiji Platinum Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    What other choices did he have? think about it..
  4. B

    Bulesi JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    It seems intergrity is something alien to ccm; what matters is the number of votes that will enable them to win political office!!
  5. dkims

    dkims Senior Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    uncle is getting mad,..! we have to pray for him.

    DICTATOR JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    We are not serious with fighting against corruption, I think we need more strict people on the issue about the matter.
  7. Zak Malang

    Zak Malang JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    He had other choices -- he could have avoided embracing them on the rostrums the way he did. In fact he could have given the constituencies a wide berth!
  8. Ntemi Kazwile

    Ntemi Kazwile JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    It would have been wiser not to visit those constituents, send the Makambas and the Tambwes there to campaign for him. It is shameful for a president preaching a war on corruption to be on the same podium with corruption suspects and worse still market them as having minor cases which they will soon win!
  9. Ng'wanangwa

    Ng'wanangwa JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Mjomba haaminiki kila kona.

    Hivi nchi hii ina mazuzu wangapi? Kwa sababu watu wenye akili nzuri nina uhakika hawatamchagua huyu jamaa.
  10. Negotiator

    Negotiator JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    wapemba hujuana kwa vilemba vyao.

    Naam nawe utawajua kwa vilemba vyao
  11. Amoeba

    Amoeba JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Sure, we must pray for him.......!
  12. Shapu

    Shapu JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Janja yake kwisha...he must bite the bullet!
  13. K

    Kilembwe JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    My fellow Tzs I wanna recommend this " Good intentions not accompanied by good actions will only lead to Good frustrations" do we want this... No ,so let us do it on October 31st, let us show them that We Can! let us , say no to CCM on that day! Like Nelson Mandela said " It is a long way to freedom" I think now we have reached the end of the road, and there is a bridge ahead of us, let us do it, let us CROSS THE BRIDGE OF CHANGE!
  14. M

    Mfwatiliaji JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    Huyo anayeitwa prof Maina anayetetea huu upuuzi, ni nani huyu?
    Hebu wanaomwelewa mtupe data zake..
    Huyu atakuwa ni mmoja wa mafisadi wanojaribu kutetea ukiukaji wa maadili kwa kujificha nyuma ya vifungu vya sheria.
  15. Indume Yene

    Indume Yene JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    How could he board those helicopters for CCM campaign if he alienated those graft suspects? Take a minute and think about it.
  16. sblandes

    sblandes JF-Expert Member

    Sep 27, 2010
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    I think the president, also CCM chairman of CCM by campaigning for and making practical jokes with alleged Fisadis might cost him severely, he failed to differentiate between the presidency and personal friendship.