Dar es Salaam. The ruling party, CCM, has said former President Jakaya Kikwete’s statement on the need for African governments to give political space to opposition parties had no reference whatever to Tanzania.
Discussing a paper presented on Good Governance and Rule of Law at the Leadership Forum 2017 in Johannesburg last month, Kikwete called upon African governments not to consider opposition parties as the enemy but as partners in democracy and therefore.
But the CCM Ideology and Publicity secretary Humphrey Polepole told PoliticalPlatform during an exclusive interview that Mr Kikwete’s comments were not a reflection of what is going on in Tanzania. If the message was intended for Tanzania, according to Mr Polepole, he would have delivered it here. “That’s why Mr Kikwete chose an international platform. There was no need for him to address democracy issue in South Africa if he intended to address the country’s situation. There are many African countries whose progress in democracy is wanting, those are the ones he targeted,” Mr Polepole said.
The CCM spokersperson went on to say despite the fact that some Tanzanian opposition politicians were sabotaging the country’s crackdown on economic crimes, the government does not consider them as enemies. “Elected politicians in the opposition were voted in office to serve the people, to help them overcome various development challenges. But they are not ready to work with people in the wards and constituents,” he lamented.
Speaking on the ongoing exercise of CCM’s property and asset assessment , Mr Polepole said CCM would come with a special operation to recover its assets.
“I’m not going to name the properties, but this should be our message that CCM properties unlawfully owned by individuals will be recovered in the near future,” he said.
He added that CCM initiated the verification of assets to measure its economic strength and weaknesses saying it was shameful for a party with a history of helping several liberation movements in Africa to depend on contribution of individual members.
Mr Polepole said verification identified that CCM owned 22 football stadia out of 33 available in the country and the party was refurbishing the grounds to meet required standards.