Tanzania: ruling CCM loses another high profile member days before general election

Dr. Sinare announcing her departure from Tanzania's ruling party

Dr. Sinare announcing her departure from Tanzania’s ruling party

Six days before millions of Tanzanians head to the voting booths to cast their votes for the country’s next political leaders and legislators, the ruling party Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) has lost another top politician Dr Eve-Hawa Sinare.

Sinare, a longtime executive in the party announced Monday in Dar es Salaam, she was quitting the most powerful and influential political party in Tanzania due to its failure to fix the economy and the judiciary.
She did not name the political party she will be joining, but maintained she will continue supporting positive “changes, thinking and ideologies.”

Ever since, the former premier and current opposition coalition; UKAWA presidential candidate Edward Lowassa announced his departure from the ruling party in July, CCM has lost dozens of executives and long serving members to the four-party opposition alliance.

“There have been consistencies that are contrary to democratic values within the party. I don’t find true commitment from CCM even if it retains power, and as a concerned citizen I have to raise my voice for change,” Sinare told reporters.

She said under the ruling CCM, civil servants are not fully given chance to exercise their professionalism. She went ahead alleging that the ruling party has now resorted using media and security agencies for their own political gains.

In the run up to the October 25 poll, opposition have accused the ruling party for manipulating opinion polls to demonstrate John Pombe Magufuli, the party nominee is significantly ahead of his arch-rival Lowassa.

Also the party’s internal election process was also marred by allegations of lack of transparency and democracy, and conflict all of which led to Lowassa elimination in the first round of the nomination contest and subsequently led to his defection.

Dr Sinare, a commissioner for the Joint Finance Commission, said the country facing serious challenges and that “these challenges were supposed to be sorted out by establishing a platform for people to deliberate contentious issues …but that won’t happen with CCM.”

She legal expert also hopes the proposed constitution is ‘buried’ should CCM or Opposition emerge victorious on October 25 because it does not accurately represent views of majority Tanzanians.
Sinare also faults CCM for failing to address human rights issues, corruption scandals and legislators’ pay. She goes on to say her former party did not act accordingly in generating funds for improving public services but rather it has been catering to selfish—political interests.

Public services notably, Health and education are extremely expensive. The government has vowed to provide free education from primary to form four secondary educations. Youth unemployment is also a huge challenge across the country.

“I want change. I will support the youth who want new critical thinking and not business as usual,” she said in Dar es Salaam.
CCM public Ideology and publicity secretary Nape Nnauye was non-committal when contacted by this website.

Meanwhile, as the highly anticipated election draws closer, the Forum of Parliaments of the International Conference on the Great Lake Region (FP-ICGLR) is in Tanzania conducting a parliamentary electoral observation mission.

FP-ICGLR Executive Committee President and Mission leader Peter Mositet said in Dar es Salaam Monday “Tanzanians must uphold peace and national unity during and after the general election.”

He said his team will across the country monitoring campaigns from Tuesday October 20 to October 28.
“We’re deploying an observation mission to monitor the general election. We hope Tanzania will sail through the elections and uphold peace,” he said adding “after the election all Tanzanians will continue to be Tanzanians win or lose.”

The mission is now conducting a capacity-building seminar for parliamentarians designed to reflect on the electoral processes in the Great Lakes Region.

Higiro Prosper, FP-ICGLR and a Senator from Rwanda said the workshop intends to understand what should be an efficient electoral process by involving parliaments and parliamentarians of member states of the ICGLR in the ongoing election preparations in Tanzania