Saturday, July 18, 2009

Time to retire, Mzee Kingunge

Veteran politician, Mzee Kingunge Ngombale-Mwiru on Wednesday urged the Roman Catholic Church to withdraw a pastoral document giving its members with guidelines on electing political leaders.

Why? He said the document, authored by the Catholic Professionals of Tanzania and the Episcopal Conference’s Justice and Peace Commission was “divisive” and could spark “unnecessary chaos”.

It’s now getting to be very common, this scare-mongering from politicians who have nothing to say. They sound like the latest mushrooming ‘churches’ who want to win converts by scaring their poor, ignorant flock with endless sermons of devils, witchcraft, genies and other nonsense. You will hardly hear the preachings and the goodness of Christ!

So, politically, Mzee Kingunge is busy scare-mongering. When Tanzania was about to go multi-party it was none-other than Mzee Kingunge who was busy scaring us that a multi-party system would reduce Tanzania into blood bath. This was just when Tanzanians were recoiling from the horrors of the Rwanda genocide. We ignored him and presently Bongo is having a multi-party system. A bit shaky, but we have one.

Now he is into his pet project of scare-mongering again. This time he is talking about “religious differences” Mzee Kingunge has dangled the horrors of Lebanon where they had a 15-year religious strife in the 1970. He forgot to say that the strife also had something to do with class and ethnicity.

The Churches are seeking to influence on how to question prospective holders of political office before the 2010 general elections. What’s wrong with that?

Part of the Churches document says the country is experiencing “serious leadership problems” and calls on Catholics to participate in the forthcoming elections to choose ‘good leaders”. Again, what is wrong with that?

I thought the entire United Republic of Tanzania wants decent leaders and not a bunch of fakes masquerading as leaders. Of course most of them are just rulers imposed on us..

We know that there is a problem of most rulers especially in their credibility to do the job. We want all top leaders to be vetted by Parliament on if they can really deliver. It’s boring and unfair to see a bunch of ‘washikaji’ run the country. We want a meritocracy. We want the people to choose their representatives, including independent reps, to their parliament.

The fact is a great, capable guy or lady, who can deliver is just that. No bum will ask about his religion or his ethnicity, at least not in Tanzania. But most politicians always fail resist the devilish temptation of introducing religion. If you let them, then they graduate to the other evil-ethnicity.

I remember that the late Father of the Nation, Mwalimu Nyerere always warned us against these evils. He told us that once you hear someone peddling religion or tribe in their political campaigns, then run!

I have lived in a neighboring country for a couple of years, where to get a partner of your liking, your religion and tribe matters. It is ridiculous but true. Why should some people fear a call to elect decent guys in office? That is simply civic education which has been around for ages.

One would think that all Tanzanians, of different religious and ethnic divide should seek to question those claiming for political leadership. People should know the real people who want to serve and vote for them. People should also know the political con-men and kick them out. What’s wrong with that?
Maybe Mzee Kingunge Ngombale-Mwiru would like to concentrate on pinching his grand-children cheeks and go fishing with them. It could that he still thinks Tanzania is a one party country!

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