ACT Wazalendo is a party that stands firm on democracy and the due process that comes with it, steadfast in ensuring that the voice of the people is heard and adhered too without compromising on the principles of democracy.
What has transpired in Zanzibar has left us both in awe and disgust on how certain individuals can manipulate the system to best suite their crude desire for power. Right after the nullification of the elections in Zanzibar, ACT Wazalendo was firm in its stand that democracy was being toyed with and that the Zanzibari peoples wishes were not respected. It is the party’s firm belief that Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad was the chosen president for the people and by the people.
We raised ten (10) points of caution to President Magufuli; as the custodian of democracy in the United Republic of Tanzania for him to take to task, one of them being the current situation in Zanzibar showing all signs of lacking any democratic decorum. This plea unfortunately fell on deaf ears and the outcome of this negligence was the re-run of the Zanzibar election in March, which to date still bids the question of the legality and mannerism of how it was conducted.
ACT Wazalendo continues its fight for a booming democratic environment in Zanzibar that would foster the growth of new age politicians who are not intimidated by sheer police brutality or the power of the state. With this stand, ACT Wazalendo, has continually denounced the legality of the election in Zanzibar and has chosen not to recognise the current government of Zanzibar in its totality for, if there is ever a doubt that ones rights are infringed the party will not stand by those who infringing the rights of another.
Chaos breeds fear and fear has no part in the struggle to attain justice. Dr. Shein recently has been quoted saying “I am not afraid of Maalim Seif, for he does not have no posses tanks or ammunition”. In hindsight he is right, Maalim Seif does not possess the power and might of the state, after the sabotage that took place in October 2016 he is merely a citizen and former 2nd Vice president of Zanzibar. But let us not forget that he also happens to be the leader of a group of people on the Isles, maybe he does not require military might to be feared all he needs to do is get the attention of his followers. Maybe this was the trigger effect that made the army interrogate the politician when he simply wanted to practice his democratic right to be heard.
ACT Wazalendo cannot condone the words said by Dr. Shein, for one they are beneath him and beneath any self respecting citizen of the United Republic of Tanzania, we were liberated; one half by good diplomacy and the other half by force. It would be wise for Dr. Shein to remember the seat that he is clinging on comes with its own history, and it should be a lesson to him no to mock the people by threatening them with military might, after all the Sultan of Oman, not only had his army but also the backing of the then hegemony United Kingdom, this did not stop those who could not stand injustice to stand up against military might. Words such as those uttered by Dr. Shein only work to remind us that Zanzibar is not a step sibling that we can ignore, that such mishap and insensitivity from a seasoned politician leaves the isle vulnerable to many a thing, we do not want to see our brothers and sisters shed blood…again.
As a party, ACT Wazalendo is fully aware of the hardship that faces the Zanzibar people, the political tension translates to a stagnant economy and a demoralised society. We do understand that there is a need for the people to take control of their state but we firmly believe and have not lost hope that the process be ballot and not bullet. One way of ensuring that the Zanzibari people walk away the winners and not just the politician, is for those who want to serve the people to lower themselves and consider their people first and not self gratification.
If we may, let us restart the clock again for Zanzibar, go to the ballot and ensure that the peoples wishes are respected no matter what the outcome maybe. Some may argue that how can we restart the clock? That at no point in time can a state be without a leader. For this we say, have a transitional government that comprises of members from all political players on the isles, let that government involve people who are respected by all fractions of Zanzibaris.
Possibly the greatest thing for the Zanzibari people to do is to ignore the blatant attack on their integrity and rights by Dr. Shein, for he may have not known better. Let history be a reminder for him and a point to remember for the people on the isles that throughout oppressors have met an unfavourable outcomes, we do not wish to see the same for Zanzibar no do we wish for their good name to be tarnished.
Zitto Kabwe, MP
Party Leader, ACT Wazalendo
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Published June 14, 2016