Tanzania: The Republic where the President cannot manage anything negative!

I have noticed that people are dealing too much with the negative, with what is wrong. … Why not try the other way, to look into the patient and see positive things, to just touch those things and make them bloom?”Thich Nhat Hanh

Today, its reported that The Citizen Newspaper has been suspended for 7 days for publishing a story on how the shilling is deprecating towards the US Dollar. That story was published on the 23rd February 2019. Therefore, the state has acted against the publication for saying possibly the truth.

The state who are ensuring, that less and less free speech. Where opposition politicians cannot do their job, do their duty as parties or even try to gain new electorate without getting in legal jeopardy. A Republic where the statistics and research have to accepted by the righteous board or public body before being published. Where bloggers, social media personalities and other to register themselves and pay yearly fees to be able to do so.

The state has under President John Pombe Magufuli become a shrinking space for free though, assembly and even liberty. As even demonstrations and planned movement of dissidents has been hit down hard by the authorities, as people didn’t celebrate Union Day in 2018. Because, the army was in the streets and prepared for the planned demonstrations. They were instead in their homes in safety, than going out to meet the soldiers.

That is what the CCM is serving the public under Magufuli. A man who cannot stomach critics, stomach true criticism or even balanced reporting. He can only manage praise, ass-kissing and blind devotion. Nothing else matters to the President.

In the Republic, everything has to be positive, the news got to be good and show the greatness of everything Magufuli and his administration does. If not make the Opposition look like traitors, thugs and criminals, because they are prosecuted for actually trying to do party work and rally their supporters, which they have to notify and get accepted to do by proper authorities.

That is why, today is another day, another newspaper, another media house that has gotten punished in Tanzania. This is not the first and not the last under this President. There been suspension of radios and newspapers before. But his actions are getting reckless, his motives are more bleak and weak. The President is looking like a man who needs a constant approval. He needs respect, but he isn’t that respected. That because he spreads fear, instead of bringing leadership or being a role model.

The President is using the law enforcement and fear to get people in line. Instead of doing good things and changing society in a positive direction. That is why the shillings sucks compared to the US Dollars. That is why the President and his administration suspends the Citizens. Because, the President sucks and cannot manage to fix the issue. Instead, he punish the messenger…

Not that one, that created the environment for which the message was sent from. Peace.

Hell Hath No Fury: 2 MPs Arrested in Tanzania!

Now it’s inching closer, trouble is near

But nothing’s there, when I look nothing’s there

I’m outta my mind, I’m runnin’ from guilt, but

It’s right by my side, there’s nowhere to hide”Pharrell on [Clipse’s ‘Nightmare’ 28.11.2006].

Again, there is more Members of Parliament who are in legal jeopardy in Tanzania. This is happening, as the assault on their political freedom is shrinking. The laws, which stop opposition from having meetings, lectures or Press Conferences. The state is monitoring all sorts of political activity like rallies and consultation meetings or even inner-party training. All of this is now under the scrutiny by the state. This because of the laws enacted.

Therefore, with this in mind, the Opposition MPs can only be sitting ducks, if they are trying to be active MPs or even working as Political Parties, they have to wait for the government to allow it. If not it is deemed as illegal. That is why its not strange, that more and more MPs in Tanzania gets into trouble. Also, more and more political activists, as the laws are so stringing to control them.

Morogoro. Kilombero and Mlimba Constituency MPs on Chadema ticket, Peter Lijualikali and Suzan Kiwanga, respectively, have been arrested and will appear before the Morogoro Resident Magistrate Court today. The duo have been taken to court after reporting at the Morogoro Central Police Station, responding to a police call, but instead, they have been arrested and connected to a case facing six other suspects” (Juma Mtanda – ‘Chadema MPs, six others arrested, arraigned’ 26.02.2019).

There are plenty more of MPs who has cases in courts, others who is awaiting trial. Others who just been released and surely will be in legal jeopardy soon. As the Courts, the Government and the President is giddy for their demise. If he wasn’t?

Why would the CCM make the laws like they do, while they have the majority in the United Republic?

The Opposition is a minority, a minority with nearly no rights or no voice. As they are silenced, muffled or detained. That is what they are doing. When someone comments that the MPs cannot keep themselves on the right side of the law. Just think for a brief moment.

Let’s say, if you were working as a baker and had to notify the authorities about every time your making a bread or announcing that the bread was being made. Even talking about the bread or educating about the bread. If the authorities don’t accept the time or the way you made the bread. They you either end up in Court or get Detained.

The same is now happening with the MPs in Tanzania. That is how foolish the laws are, as they are handcuffing the MPs for representing and voicing their concerns. They are not allowed to do their work, which is insulting to all intelligence and wisdom, this blue planet has. Peace.

Opinion: Tendu Lissu must have hit a nerve…

The Opposition Leader Tendu Lissu has been a sore thumb for the Tanzanian President, a long time. That is well-known. As there was even assassination attempt on the 7th September 2017, as he has since been the to the hospital for. Lissu is an MP for t he party of Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (CHADEMA), Swahili for Party for Democracy and Progress.

We know he is hitting a nerve, as the Parliament and Speaker of the Parliament, because his absence from Parliament because of treatment abroad for the wounds, that has been caused in the assassination attempt. They are not even accepting the bills from the hospital or saying, that the MP has not notified, so they know where he is.

But apparently, they should know, as he was on the same TV show with the Tanzanian Ambassador in the United States on the Voice of America (VOA) with Shaka Ssali. Therefore, the saying of no knowledge is just giving way and being difficult.

This is all petty politics. They are attacking him, because Tundu is a vocal dissident. Something, the President Joseph Magufuli and his CCM cannot manage at this point of time. Everyone is supposed to follow the party line of the President and smile at his brilliance.

Lissu is hit for everything. I have read so many comments, that he should shut-up and be of kinder words. While the CCM can do whatever they want, the opposition parties are supposed to be gentle and soft spoken. They are not supposed to retaliate, even as their space are closing in and the oppressive attitude is continuing from the authorities.

I’m sure if any of the Opposition Parties took POWER and did the same thing to CCM, as it has done to ACT Wazelendo and CHADEMA. The people and leaders of CCM would call Lissu all sort of names, also the same to Zitto Kabwe. The President are using his powers, the CCM are wilfully pushing them to the brink. They are taking the little space away, that they already have.

Now, that they even want to cut away the livelihood of Lissu. Not only with the new laws tell how they are supposed to function as parties, who is not even allowed to hold rallies, meeting or press conferences. Therefore, the next level, is just showing that the words of Lissu matters. Because, the authorities and the Parliament are striking back at him.

If the CCM and Magufuli will look good for the world. They would not limit the space of the freedom of speech, liberty of dissidents and control of the political sphere. As of today, the CCM are limiting it and assaulting it, in favour of controlling it by any means. Right now, the victim and the one hit by this is Lissu. It could be a neighbour tomorrow. Peace.

The Tanganyika Law Society: Letter from TLS President, Ms. Fatma Karume in respect of the Law Day that will be celebrated tomorrow (05.02.2019)

Tanzania: Response of the Embassy of the United Republic on the accusations raised by Hon. Tundu Lissu through DW News Africa (29.01.2019)

UN condemns killing of children in Njombe (29.01.2019)

The UN joins the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania in condemning these heinous acts.

DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, January 29, 2019 –  The United Nations in Tanzania offers its deepest condolences to the families and communities of children who have been brutally murdered in Njombe over the last few weeks.

The attack and murder of children is unacceptable. Children have a fundamental right to be safe and be protected from violence so that they can enjoy their childhood and reach their full potential.

“The UN joins the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania in condemning these heinous acts. As the UN, we stand ready to support the Government in their efforts to address the issue,” said Mr. Alvaro Rodriguez, UN Resident Coordinator in Tanzania. “Additionally, we call upon all stakeholders to join hands to ensure that homes, schools and communities are safe spaces for children.”

Children are exposed to extreme forms of violence and exploitation in many parts of the world. “This has to stop,” said Ms. Maniza Zaman, UNICEF Representative in Tanzania. “No form of violence or abuse against a child is acceptable or permissible for any reason and any such act is an outright violation of their basic human rights.”

Tanzania: Restrictions on Advertisment of Gaming Activities (23.01.2019)

Opinion: Magufuli is now the Big-Brother!

We are rapidly entering the age of no privacy, where everyone is open to surveillance at all times; where there are no secrets from government.” [Osborn v. United States, 385 U.S. 323, 341 (1966) (dissenting)]” – William O. Douglas

No matter where you are, where you go or what you do, President John Pombe Magufuli follows you. Especially, if he has appointed you. He does it, he says to ensure better working environment and results. Alas, however, this is surveillance tactics. Which are usually only done by People who has warrants and works on Criminal Investigations for ensuring espionage or even illegal activity of gangs and others. The President of Tanzania. Has gone total estranged with privacy, with respect of fellow human beings and are now wire-tapping or having surveillance of the fellow appointed people’s phones. So, if they write something he might not like or accept. He might fire them!

Here is a fragment of Edge, who has taken some from The Citizen (Tanzania):

““When I tracked the telephone message between Mwalimu and Chaula, I noticed a strain in their working relationship. So to make their quarrels stop, I decided to place them under the same ministry,” Magufuli is quoted by The Citizen as saying. Magufuli told the new appointees to take care because they will face more trials during their work “I’m watching you. These quarrels must stop,” he warned” (Edge.ug – ‘I tap texts of my ministers, says Magufuli’ 09.01.2019, link: http://edge.ug/2019/01/09/i-tap-texts-of-my-ministers-says-magufuli/.

He said he is watching you. Like a hawk, the man is following the steps of Stasi Apparatus, the sort of surveillance, that is ensuring that you have spies everywhere and anyone can tell on you. He follows the cellphones of his staff and his appointments, the cabinet members and government officials. If this isn’t insulting anyone, than its weird. No one should be kept under surveillance, unless there is probable cause of intent or crimes committed to prove the need for this.

It shouldn’t be a tool of an Executive, to ensure people are working like you should. If they don’t work like you want them. Tell them the protocol and procedures, explain how you want the working environment to be and ensure the staff together with the appointed follows all guidelines put in place. Don’t tap their phones, listen to conversations, read their messages and whatnot. That is just some nonchalant, disrespectful and disgraceful acts of spite, evading privacy and social protocol. Especially, since these people are supposed to be the trusted men and woman.

He proved today with his statements, that there is no-privacy, there is no forum undisclosed. He does this to his own. No matter, what reasons he gives. It is an insane idea. If these men or woman, was cartel/triad/mafia members of secretive gangster operation. I would have understood the surveillance on them and the need for following their telecommunication.

Alas, these people are government officials, who are the appointed people of the Head of State. Which, the Head of States is monitoring. That is just wrong. It would be wrong if he did it, because he could to anybody. This is the sort of disgraceful act, a President shouldn’t do, but apparently, he does and is proud of it too. Peace.

Tanzania: Zanzibar Declaration (18.12.2018)

A Joint Declaration by Leaders and Senior Membersof Six Opposition Parties who met in Zanzibar on 16th – 18th December, 2018 to deliberate on the State of Democracy in the United Republic of Tanzania

WE, the leaders and senior members of the undersigned six political parties, have met here in Zanzibar from 16th to 18th December, 2018 in order to reflect, discuss and agree on our common vision for the future of democracy in the United Republic of Tanzania. The historic meeting here in Zanzibar is a reflection of the extent to which the democratic and human rights situation in our country has changed, thereby leading to unprecedented actions on our side in response. Keenly missed during the discussions have been our two colleagues, the Leader of Official Oppostion, Hon. Freeman Mbowe and the Chief Whip of the Opposition in the Union Parliament, Hon. TunduLissu, one of whom is languishing in prison and the other recovering from an assassination attempt. Both of them gave their blessings to this meeting.

WE recognise that Tanzania is facing backsliding of democracy, with all signs pointing to institutionalization of an authoritarian rule that ignores political, social and economic rights of our people. This trend began with the annulment of October 25, 2015 Zanzibar general elections after it became clear that the Civic United Front (CUF) was heading towards a decisive victory. The move was then followed by banning of live coverage of parliamentary proceedings, banning of legitimate political activitites of opposition parties, kidnappings, abductions, and arbitrary arrests of people, notablypolitical leaders and activists, journalists and business people, assassination attempt against our fellow opposition leader and outspoken member of parliament, Hon. Tundu Lissu and absolute refusal of the state to investigate the matter in a purposeful and concrete manner; passing of repressive laws such as the Media Services Act, the Statistics Act, the NGO regulations and the Bill for Political Parties (Amendments) Act.

WE recognise that, despite constitutional protections ofmultiparty system, the state is currently waging an openwar against opposition political parties. It is becoming a norm nowadays to hear state leaders and their supportersbranding opposition politicians and government critics as unpatriotic and that they are “foreign agents” and “imperialist stooges”. The crusade against critics of the regime has spared no one in the country from the media, civil society organisations, farmers, fishermen, pastoralits, the business community, trade unions and workers, faith leaders, the diplomatic corps, women and girls, and even critical CCM members.

WE are saddened by the crumbling state of our economy which affects the vulnerable and the poor in our society. In spite of the attempts by the regime to spin the situation, we feel it is imperative to publicly and openly state that within the space of three years the country has seen the reversal of even the little achievements that were registered in economic performance. The economic meltdown that this regime has brought will take at least a decade before it can recover and begin to provide for our citizens’ economic opportunities as required for by the constitution. The situation is no longer tolerable. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

WE recognise that it is our responsibility as leaders and as citizens of this country to save our country from this state and safeguard our democracy that meets the needs and aspirations of our people.

WE declare that time has come to renew our commitment and strengthen our solidarity in pursuing a national agenda against rising authoritarianism, an agenda that goes beyond individual interests of our parties. This will require courage to withstand the onslaught that we will face from the regime, firmness in our solidarity when attempts will be made to break it, and commitment towards inviting and incorporating other potential allies as equals in this movement.

WE declare that Freeman Mbowe and Esther Matiko,who are currently held in remand prison, are political prisoners and should be released immediately. We will engage in a concerted campaign to ensure that all political prisoners in Tanzania are either released or given access to justice and a free and fair due process of the law.

WE reiterate our stance that the imposed government of Zanzibar is unconstitutional and lacks mandate from the people. The results of the 2015 annulled election was a clear proof that CUF has won all the elections in Zanzibar since 1995 and that they have been prevented from ascending to power through state machinations and reversing of the will of the electorate. Time has come to restore electoral justice in Zanzibar.

WE pronounce that 2019 is a year of reclaiming our democracy and taking back our powers and rights as enshrined within the Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania, the Constitution of Zanzibar and other enabling pieces of legislation. We will hold public rallies in any and all corners of the United Republic of Tanzania. We will not allow an unconstitutional and unlawful order to restrict us to our individual constituencies. If the government is threatened by us exercising our constitutional rights, we dare them to take us to court.

WE declare that we will unanimously embrace all citizens and all social and economic groups in the country willing to conquer their fears and join the grand coalition that we envisage to defend our democracy. We vow that we will no longer be silenced or intimidated; we will no longer succumb to the state sanctioned violence against our individual and collective rights and entitlements. We commit ourselves to taking this message of freedom to all our fellow leaders, constituents, and allies and support them in taking action, whether small or large, as a symbol of solidarity.

We resolve to form a Joint Committee that, among other things, will work with the likeminded individuals and groups to draw a comprehensive programme to reclaim our democratic and civil rights.

1. Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad – Secretary Genaral, CUF​
2. James Francis Mbatia – National Chairperson, NCCR Mageuzi​
3. Oscar Emanuel Makaidi – National Chairperson, NLD​
​4. Salum Mwalimu – Deputy Secretary General – Zanzibar, CHADEMA​
​5. Hashim Rungwe Spunda – National Chairman, CHAUMMA​
6. Kabwe Z. Ruyagwa Zitto – Party Leader, ACT Wazalendo​

Zanzibar
December 18, 2018