Dar es Salaam. Tanzania did finally fill up its entitlement of nine MPs at the East African Legislative Assembly (Eala) when on Wednesday Ms Pamela Maasay and Ms Josephine Lemoyan, beat four other Chadema contenders to clinch the coveted seats at the regional parliamentary assembly. They were voted in by MPs of the National Assembly in Dodoma.
The election was held to fill two seats which were left vacant after the April vote in which two candidates who were nominated by Tanzania’s top-most opposition party, Mr Ezekiel Wenje and Mr Lawrence Masha, were rejected in a vote by the CCM dominated august House.
In the Wednesday poll, Ms Maasay won 200 votes as Ms Lemoyan bagged 219. Unlike other opposition aspirants, Ms Pamela Maasay was virtually unknown by general public.
So, who is Pamela Maasay? The new Eala lawmaker is an engineer, environment and human rights activist.
She holds a Master of Public Health and a Bachelor’s degree in Food and Biochemical Engineering from the University of Dar es Salaam, Diploma in Laboratory Science from the Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology (DIT) as well as Diploma in Environmental Science from the Atlantic International University.
The MP-elect serves as the chairlady for the Chadema Youth Wing Council (Bavicha) in the Kawe Constituency and a member of the party’s Central Committee. She was also a delegate to the Judge Joseph Warioba-chaired Constitutional Assembly. She also participated in the 2010 and 2015 general election campaigns and is credited as being one of the forces that led to the convincing victory the fiery Halima Mdee as Kawe MP and Mr Edward Lowassa’s strong first runner-up position in the race to Ikulu.
She was also in the 2010 taskforce which came up with the idea of having university students as election agents in Ubungo and Kawe constituencies, both of which went to Opposition candidates.
Ms Maasay is an ambassador of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) which was initiated by former US President Barack Obama. Furthermore, she was appointed member of the organising committee which prepared the 2016 World Youth Day in Poland from 26-31 July last year. Her CV also shows she is a board member of the Colour of Hope situated in Germany. The institution engages in providing relief to people with needs; it served the Haitians when their country was troubled by an earthquake.
On the EAC arena, Ms Massay looks like she will be confortable as a rep for Tanzania, as records show that she is a member of the East African Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement. This position gave her the opportunity to travel across the region to mobilize effort geared at afforestation and environmental conservation.
Again, she is among the Technical Committee of the Ministry of Trade and Industries that regulates standards of products made in East African countries.
She is currently biochemical engineer with the Coca Cola Kwanza bottling company in Dar es Salaam.
And then, who is Josephine Lemoyan? Like Ms Maasay, the name of Josephine Lemoyan is quite new to many people, yet she made to the Eala by coming tops by garnering 219 votes. She describes herself as a social entrepreneur in Wash, focusing on good governance and accountability, Accountability & Governance.
Ms Lemoyan is a trained sociologist and researcher, with a long experience in local governance and boasts long work experience in public service sectors particularly rural areas and urban councils.
Furthermore, she has worked in programmes funded by World Bank (WB), Danish International Development Agency (Danida).
She holds a BA (Hons) in Sociology from the University of Dar es Salaam; MA (Sociology), University of Dar es Salaam and Master of Sciences in Applied Social Research in Sociology and Social Anthropology from Hull University, UK.