Chadema’s Assault on Zanzibaris

I was keeping abreast with the latest developments in Tanzania by reading online content of the Mwanahalisi newspaper and an article titled ‘Chadema Yamtega Tena JK’ prompted me to write a few words.

There has been a lot of tension between Zanzibaris andTanganyikans on matters associated with the Union and at the height of these tensions the Union Government appointed a full time Minister responsible for Union matters. Many Zanzibaris believe that their autonomy is being violated and that conduct of the Union Government represents a serious departure from original articles of the union without consensus. The recent decision of Dr. Shein to be sworn in like a Minister of the Union Government infuriated many Zanzibaris and was translated as an act of demeaning the Zanzibari Presidency. My intent is not to go into specificities of these differences and opinions, the reason I cited these examples is to put my argument in the right perspective and context by reminding readers and fellow bloggers on the political climate so that readers can make  an informed and  meaningful assessment.

Here is a quote from the said article on Chadema’s recommendation on what should be the role of the President of Zanzibar on the ongoing Constitutional Reforms.

Mtoa taarifa anataja hoja nyingine iliyowasilishwa na CHADEMA, ni juu ya nafasi ya Zanzibar na Rais wa Zanzibar katika upatikanaji wa katiba mpya. Wakati sheria inasema, tume ya kukusanya maoni itaundwa na rais “kwa kushauriana na kukubaliana na rais wa Zanzibar,” CHADEMA walipendekeza rais wa Zanzibar kufanywa mshauri badala ya kutajwa kuwa “afikie makubaliano.”

My article is based on what I cited above and if what the newspaper report is not a fair presentation of what actually transpired during the meeting between Chadema and the President I welcome those concerned to keep the record straight.

This recommendation by Chadema to reduce the President of Zanzibar to a consultative capacity on matters that impact the lives of  all Tanzanians including Zanzibaris is a continuation of  this pattern to reduce  the status and significance of Zanzibar on union matters and is an outright assault on the people of Zanzibar. While Zanzibaris are struggling not to be marginalized and to have more say on matters that impact their lives, Chadema is perpetuating the culture of undermining Zanzibaris to a people who should be dictated to as though Zanzibaris do not have the capacity to think and decide.

It is necessary for citizens  to understand positions of political parties in order to decide what parties they wish to be supportive of, I would like to urge all Zanzibaris to factor in this position of Chadema on Zanzibaris in their quest for political affiliation and loyalty.


 Link to the said article: