The aim is to explain party stand on endorsed constitution bill
Chadema has formed a sub-committee which will seek audience with President Jakaya Kikwete to present the party stand on the Constitutional Review Bill which was endorsed by members of parliament last week..
The party resolution was arrived at during a one day meeting of the party’s Centre Committee in Dar es Salaam on Sunday; to discuss the debate and endorsement of the bill and the reasons for the MPs walk-out during the debate.
Chadema National Chairman Freeman Mbowe told journalists yesterday in Dar es Salaam that the party had already started the process of seeking appointment to meet President Kikwete.
“All the discussions will be made public soon after getting the chance to meet President Kikwete,” he said.
Mbowe said that his party has good intentions and wanted to explain to President Kikwete why they walked out of the National Assembly and their basic demands regarding the entire process of writing the new constitution.
“If President Kikwete will not see our ideas as valid we will go back to wananchi and tell them how the government of CCM has monopolised the constitution process,” Mbowe said. According to Mbowe, the sub committee of six people will be led by him and include Deputy Chairmen Said Issa Mohamed from Zanzibar and Saidi Arfi from the Mainland.
Others are the Party’s Secretary General Dr Wilbroad Slaa, Political Advisor Prof Mwesiga Baregu, Legal Expert Prof Abdallah Safari and Committee Secretary Tundu Lissu.
Asked what action the party would take if President Kikwete declined to meet them; he said: “We don’t want to think about a negative response now …we believe that he will accept our request because we have good intentions for the country.”
Mbowe however cautioned the police force against restricting the party’s rallies which aimed at educating the public about the country’s constitution while allowing CCM to hold the same.
“Chadema is a legally established political party. Why ban its rallies and allow those being conducted by the ruling party?” Mbowe questioned.
For his part a Member of Chadema Central Committee Tundu Lissu said Chadema MPs walked out of the National Assembly because they were not satisfied with the way the bill was handled, adding that other political parties should stop poisoning the public with wrong information.
Last week Chadema and NCCR-Mageuzi MPs walked out of the parliamentary debating chamber in protest against the tabling of the Constitutional Review Bill, 2011 on the grounds that it did not follow proper legal procedures.
The National Assembly debated and passed the Bill amid the objection.
Meanwhile the Chairman of the Tanzania Constitution Forum Deus Kibamba has rejected allegations that the Forum is in disarray for what has been reported as some members opting out and forming another platform.
Kibamba told The Guardian in a telephone interview that those people who spread the allegations were being used and it was not true that his Forum was in disarray.
“These allegations are false and were spread by two people who said that they have formed what they called Constitution Platform. This has no impact on our forum,” Kibamba said.
He asked: “If a new political party is being registered in the country does it mean that all the political parties in the country have died?”
“I assure you that our Forum is still active and tomorrow (today) we are going to issue our stand on the way forward after the National Assembly endorsed the Constitution Review Bill 2011,” Kibamba said.
He stressed that the forum did not favour any political party and what it did was to shape the ideas which they thought could be useful in the process of writing a new constitution.