By Guardian on sunday correspondent Just before I started –off for LUSAKA, I was in Dar es Salaam on the new year eve and for me it was one of those rare opportunities that I could watch the Head of State addressing the Nation in a televised speech to remind people 2010 was no more and I was certain his speech would earn him the usual "Hotuba Nzuri" comments. I learned though, from the body language and the slight loss of his trademark smile that always marks him out as one of the most pleasing presidents on the eye that this was signaling the challenge ahead, having to face the daunting task of steering the country back to safety at the time when CCM are facing their sternest test. The once popular CCM who are falling out of grace right now and are faced with an awful lot of problems both from within and outside with CHADEMA preying on their frailties. Whatever he said on that night is beside the point but I realised I was watching the man who would have to deal with a "swim or sink" scenario. Then, problems are coming thick and fast. The cost of living is escalating beyond description, with inflation reaching the record high by March, this year. At the same time corruption, the ever falling education standards, unemployment and power rationing are rocking the country at a very alarming pace. Simply put, the country is now sitting on a bomb waiting to explode. Sadly for him, "Good Speech" Can never solve any of these issues. Naturally, any serious opposition party can not ignore these issues or sit back and wait for the next elections in 2015. Any suggestion to that effect is both misleading and unrealistic. Unfortunately, the registrar of political parties perhaps reacting to JK's end of the month address has already issued a warning against CHADEMA'S operation Sangara" and similar operations. With all due respect, the last I would expect from John Tendwa, the Political Parties Registrar is threats to strong parties like Chadema, but I think his job should have been to register the parties period. Whatever happens thereafter in the political field should remain none of his business as long as their actions satisfy the requirements of the law. In modern era liberal democracy, I don't expect the registrar to choose words for politicians. Legally speaking, statements or words can result into injury and this may constitute defamation. But I expect Tendwa to know that CHADEMA'S statements to be legally defamatory they must first and foremost be false as truth is always a complete defense. Another comedy is when CCM say it is Ok for CHADEMA to make those statements during the election campaign but entirely wrong after elections. Forgive me, but I don't quite understand this reasoning. I thought what counts is the content of the statement not the timing of it. Then Stephen Wassira, a man renowned for jumping ships comes and recites the same stuff the president had said perhaps assuming his lips are more trusted than his boss and Chiligati follows suit. The bottom line is FEAR now rules the party. CCM face the opposition with huge trepidation considering what is happening else where in Africa. CHADEMA are hitting CCM where it hurts the most. They are reaching out to the people who are bearing the brunt of unemployment, uninterrupted poverty, corruption and the sky rocketing infflation and they are attracting unprecedented followers in the process. CCM would be kidding themselves to think CHADEMA will heed to their advice to follow the tradition of having one election and then chill until the next. or vent their grievances in the parliament. With CUF in CCM's right pocket, and MREMA who is in the afternoon of his political career in their left pocket, it is unlikely CHADEMA will take the bait. If CCM had thought CHADEMA were bluffing when they said they would go throughout the country with rallies and demonstrations, now they know this isn't just a game of bluff; they mean business. CCM's fall from grace may not necessarily be down to CHADEMA or the political aptitude of the likes of DR. Slaa. They themselves have been instrumental in their own downfall. While a few years ago some people would proudly don CCM colours and those cheap T-shirts thrown to them every elections or flock in numbers from street that reeks of urine and unpaved roads to obediently fill up stadiums to listen to slogans they barely understood, today even shoppers are careful to skip anything green because wearing a green shirt in some parts of TZ is considered a crime against morality. Some people think CCM is synonymous with "UFISADI" the Swahili word for corruption. In those forgotten corners of the country where you find mud-walled and straw roofed huts proudly called homes, terms like DOWANS or RICHMOND are common on the lips of people although they have no idea what electricity is all about. It all began when CCM, for reasons best known to themselves had their political ideals thrown overboard and "survival of the riches" approach adopted. This approach saw the dreadful inclusion of notorious culprits in CCM's engine room. This shocking U-turn was always going to keep the party aloof from the people and they were all short –sighted not to realize the fact that keeping people at arms length would amount to cutting off the hand that feeds you. This is because government derives its just powers from the consent of the governed and whenever people see their government does not live up to their expectations they always feel obliged to alter or abolish and institute a new government. Consequently, the party's engine room was occupied by people who are either greedy or devoid of ideas and imagination. The cohesion they had enjoyed in the post-colonial decades suddenly went out of the window. This, coupled with the organisational absence of Philip Mangula led to the party being the shadow of what it once was. That's why I was not overly surprised that the central committee blessed the DOWANS' compensation by TANESCO but JK denounced the company in the space of weeks. People now question the wisdom that went into the wholesale change of the party's secretariat at the beginning of the KASI MPYA, NGUVU MPYA reign. May be he had a point, but he has failed to deliver to justify his methods and the "KASI MPYA" style is apparently running out of gas. It is mystifying that Makamba was the one to lead CCM's secretariat. Those who installed him there had their reasons but to have him as Mangula's successor was a big ask. Forgive me if I'm wrong but I have never trusted Makamba's leadership methods from the outset. With the "AMANI NA UTULIVU" shield wearing thin, Makamba offers no positive options. Whenever he is faced with any political situation that needs his attention. he would simply do what he does best; just quote the bible. Sadly, I've come to doubt his son as well. How do you recommend to TANESCO to enter into yet another contract with the controversial DOWANS while the issues surrounding the previous contract are yet to be resolved? Reasons being "DHARULA". It appears this "DHARULA" excuse is the best shield CCM can ever come up with when it comes to dubious contacts. LOWASSA used the same and I was shocked when CCM MPs , acting like individuals suffering from severe loss of memory confidently allowed him to chair one of the parliamentary committee although the devastating effect of his involvement in the deadly RICHMOND contract lingers on. As things stand, CCM should be contemplating reconstruction of the party as their survival demands that some be sacrificed. Rumour has it that the party's rehabilitation process might involve off-loading of liabilities like Makamba. Whether the anticipated changes will help heal the wounds is open to question but the damage CCM has inflicted is too severe to merit continued support from the masses. Evidently, our society is going through political metamorphosis. What shape will these changes take is beyond me but relegating CCM to the opposition status remains a mouth - watering prospects. As for Makamba et al, fishermen always know that when you catch a fish remember to tighten your grip because once it slips back into the water, it may take you life time to get it and when you do it might not necessarily be the SAME FISH.