Monday, 11 October 2010 The Imam-Bukhary Islamic Foundation chairman, Sheikh Khalifa Khamis (right), reads out a resolution of imams and sheikhs during a press conference in Dar es Salaam yesterday. With him is the seminar chairman, Sheikh Mohamed Imams and sheikhs have urged security organs in the country to take precaution and be prepared for any conduct which could endanger peace ahead of or during the October 31 General Election.They have also warned religious leaders against using their places of worship to preach politics. They said churches and mosques should be used as houses of prayers and not platforms from which voters are directed on whom to vote for. Reading their resolutions after a one-day seminar which brought together imams and sheikhs from Dar es Salaam, organised by the Imam Bukhary Islamic Foundation, the chairman of the organisation, Sheikh Khalifa Khamis, commended the Tanzania People's Defence Force (TPDF) for their recent warning against those bent on causing violence. He urged state organs not to hesitate to intervene in cases involving breach of peace and security, saying that warnings without action were not enough. The seminar, which was aimed at giving the the delegates civic education ahead of the General Election, was attended by more than 100 clerics from different mosques in Dar es Salaam Region. Sheikh Khamis said imams and sheikhs were appealing to other religious leaders to stop interfering with political affairs when preaching because that could divide the public and cause violence. "Let's use our influence to sensitise our followers on the importance of participating in elections through voting for good leaders instead of directing them to vote for certain individuals or parties," said Sheikh Khamis, noting that small committees should be formed to sensitise the public in every locality. He added: "We should ignore inciting and controversial statements by politicians that could divide the nation." They said they supported TPDF's recent statement on poll violence, noting that there were politicians whose remarks indicated that they were bent on causing chaos. They criticised people who hit out at the TPDF, and called on Tanzanians to ignore them. They also condemned people who have been circulating phone messages that were aimed at dividing Tanzanians along religions and tribal lines, saying it was very dangerous for the country's peace.