Tuesday, 14 October 2014

BBCtrending: The police officers fired for a kiss

Two Tanzanian police officers kissing

When is it OK to kiss a colleague? Two Tanzanian police officers, whose kiss was widely shared on social media, have prompted a discussion about just that - and both have also lost their jobs.
A relationship with a colleague can throw up any number of complications, but the two young police officers in the picture may not have thought it would end their careers. The photograph - taken in Kagera, north west Tanzania - shows the pair kissing whilst dressed in their work uniforms, and was considered grounds for dismissal. Residents of the country have taken to social media to voice their dismay.
The image was uploaded to the internet by a third officer, who also took the photo, and drawn to the attention of the authorities at the Kagera police force. Henry Mwaibambe, the regional police commander, spoke to the BBC about the steps taken, and defends his department's decision. "We followed all disciplinary procedures to make sure that they were given a chance to defend themselves," he says. "The officer looking at the case was convinced there was compelling evidence against them, and that they had breached police code of conduct. That's why they lost their jobs." In this case it wasn't the kiss itself that led to their dismissal, but the fact that that it happened in public, whilst in uniform, and was subsequently posted online. Indeed, the officer behind the camera also lost his job over the incident.
The story was picked up by the local press last week, and news of the punishment has surprised many on social media. Most believed the response was disproportionate. "They should have been reprimanded, sacking them is extreme, huuh!" posted one on Facebook. "I once saw a pic of former US President the late Reagan kissing his wife in the Oval Office... and nobody called for his impeachment," said another. "Police couple kissing taken more serious than bribery," wrote a third on Twitter.
Masoud George, a lawyer at the Tanzania Legal and Human Rights Center says that as severe as the punishment seems, the decision is unlikely to be illegal. "It is according to their code of conduct, so from a legal point of view we can't say their dismissal was unfair."
Reporting by Sam Judah

Ebola outbreak: UN health worker dies in Germany hospital

The clinic for infectious diseases at St. Georg Hospital in Leipzig, Germany, 9 October 2014.  
The Ebola patient was being treated at St Georg hospital in Leipzig

A UN medical worker infected with Ebola has died at a hospital in Germany.
Doctors at the hospital in Leipzig said the man, 56, originally from Sudan, died despite receiving experimental drugs to treat the virus.
More than 4,400 people have died from the outbreak, mainly in West Africa.
The rate of new cases at some of the "epicentre" areas has slowed down, the World Health Organization says, but the number of cases in the capitals of the worst-affected countries is rising.
Senior WHO official Bruce Aylward told reporters on Monday that the outbreak was also continuing to spread geographically to new districts in the capitals of Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea.
  • The US and UK are among countries to have introduced scanning at airports
  • A Spanish nurse remains in critical condition after becoming the first person to contract the disease outside of Africa last week, although doctors say there are signs of improvement
  • UN Ebola mission leader Tony Banbury has called for massive support from governments worldwide, saying: "We need everything. We need it everywhere, and we need it superfast."

Proposed new law to escalate looting, Chadema claims

Lissu alleges Draft has more shortfalls than 1977 law 
By Patty Magubira, The Citizen Reporter
  • Lissu says Tanzanians should emulate Kenya and Zimbabwe whose constitutions allowed them to sue their sitting leaders in case they sleep on the job

ShArusha. Abuse of office, embezzlement, and looting of natural resources will continue to haunt Tanzania if wananchi vote for the new proposed constitution, the main opposition Chadema has cautioned.
Entrusting the President alone with the duty of disciplining leaders as proposed in the draft law was tantamount to licensing them to become lousy, corrupt, and natural resource looters.
The Chadema lead lawyer, Mr Tundu Lissu, said at the weekend that the draft law was fraught with more shortfalls than the 1977 Constitution.
Mr Lissu, who was educating leaders and members of the main opposition party on the difference between the 1977 Constitution and the Draft Law, said cosmetics changes imposed on the new proposed constitution intended to please wananchi only.
It was time Tanzanians emulated Kenyans and Zimbabweans whose constitutions allowed them to sue their leaders in case they goofed, Mr Tundu Lissu said.
He cited charges of crimes against humanity which President Uhuru Kenyatta of the neighbouring country is facing at the International Criminal Court.
Most of the changes imposed on the Draft though seemed pleasant to women, farmers and pastoralists could neither be implemented nor enable them to hold leaders accountable, he said.
The Chadema leaders and members supported their party’s decision to zoom around the country to educate people on the contents of draft law ahead of the referendum.
They, however, called on leaders of the Coalition of the Defenders of the People’s Constitution popularly known in its Kiswahili acronym as Ukawa to unite for the sake of Tanzanians.

LAKE ZONE: Madaraka: Very few leaders honour Mwl. Nyerere’s legacy

By  Midraj Ibrahim and Emmanuel Chacha,The Citizen Reporters
  • Madaraka said the two or three govt structure did not bother him much but he said it was necessary to follow majority opinions as gathered by the CRC

BUTIAMA.Madaraka Nyerere, the sixth child of the late Father of the Nation, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, has said 15 years after his father’s death there are very few leaders who still honour him and follow his legacy.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with The Citizen at the weekend, Madaraka also said if he were a member of the Constituent Assembly (CA) he would vote NO for the proposed constitution, saying it fell short on some essential issues like leadership integrity and ethics.
“Very few leaders honour the late father of the nation…as most of them just respect him by mere words but not in a practical way…nowadays it is allowed for civil servants to double as businesspeople. During Mwalimu Nyerere’s leadership it was impossible for a public leader to engage in business. They had to choose between remaining as public leaders or being businessmen,” he stated.
He added; “I once heard President Kikwete saying public leaders should not engage in business but his ten years of leadership are almost over and nothing has been done to address this challenge.”

Commenting on the ongoing public debate on the proposed constitution, Mr Nyerere said he did not pay adequate attention to the Katiba Assembly sessions.
However, he noted that there were some basic issues that ought to have been included in the document including leadership ethics, saying they were significant for the prosperity of the nation.
On the Union structure, Mr Nyerere said two or three governments did not bother him much but he said it was necessary to follow majority opinions as gathered by the Constitution Review Commission (CRC) led by Judge Joseph Warioba.
He added that Judge Warioba, Dr Salim Ahmed Salim and Joseph Butiku were close allies of his father, noting that he hoped that the trio clearly knew Mwalimu’s vision of the country.
“I believe that they can’t betray him and perhaps what they are trying to suggest especially the re-establishment of Tanganyika government represents Mwalimu’s view,” noted Mr Madaraka.
He further defended Warioba’s commission from the current wave of criticism over the ongoing Katiba process, saying the ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) was the one to be blamed for it remained silent when the Zanzibar Constitution was being overhauled despite knowing that it contradicted the constitution for the United Republic of Tanzania.
Mwalimu Nyerere died on 14th October at St. Thomas Hospital in London, the United Kingdom.

EDITORIAL: Why Dar city must have modern passenger train

By The Citizen
  • The project, aimed at reducing traffic jams, is to be rolled out by Shumake Rails, a private American company.
Two weeks ago, the government announced it has entered into agreement with an investor from US to establish a 13km commuter train route from the Dar es Salaam city centre to the Julius Nyerere International Airport (JNIA) by the end of  December or early next year.
The project, aimed at reducing traffic jams, is to be rolled out by Shumake Rails, a private American company.  The Transport ministry through Tanzania Railways Limited will extend the metre gauge tracks from the city centre to the airport and operate under the public-private partnership.
Upon its launch, the train is expected to ferry between 800 and 1,000 passengers per trip. It should also be noted that this won’t be a subway or an underground speed train as misconceived by some people. It will be a modern passenger train with luxury coaches plying the Dar city-JNIA route.
Though the project has been criticised in some quarters, we at The Citizen believe that the anticipated service is what Dar es Salaam City needs to lessen its maddening traffic snarl up that beleaguer the road to JNIA.
Think about these facts: It takes three-plus hours from the city centre to the airport during peak hours. During that time, a plane will have taken off at JNIA and landed at OR Tambo International Airport in Johannesburg. One that left for Mwanza will have landed and flown back!
The JNIA is currently undergoing expansion and it is certain there will be more traffic as global airlines increase their frequencies to our city.
Railway transport is always among the best ways to curb traffic jams in major urban areas worldwide. It is our belief that the envisaged plan will make movement of the people in Dar es Salaam faster and revitalise our economy, not only of the city, but that of the country as a whole.

KAFUMU: Nyerere wanted democracy that protects peace, unity

  • Multiparty democracy has only nurtured hate and divisions, and building economy is no longer a priority

We continue to cherish the Father of the Nation Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, because of his wisdom and love to his people. Now 15 years after his death, the nation still cries as they remember the leader who assured peace and protection for the poor and disadvantaged majority.
Today national interests and values which Mwalimu upheld are vanishing. Mwalimu didn’t  believe in multipartyism, for he knew it would divide Tanzanians.
When asked about single and multiparty democracy, he had this to say: “...Democracy is not a bottle of Coca-Cola which you can import. Democracy should develop according to that particular country. I never went to a country, saw many parties and assumed that it is democratic. You cannot define democracy purely in terms of multi-partist parties...”
Many scholars also agree that it is not proper to simply take Western models of democracy and paste them over African countries. Africa needs some type of democracy that will encourage unity so that as the economic level of Africa grows, democracy grows too to propel people to a brighter future. Democracy must gradually develop, it must not be imposed.
Indeed as the Indian historian Ramachandra Guha wrote in his book “Makers of Modern India” a democratic revolution should be a staggered process that must be preceded by nationalism where nationhood and unity of a nation are built and strengthened, followed by economic revolution where industrialisation and urbanisation must take place. 
Guha cites US which proclaimed its national independence in the 18th Century, urbanised and industrialised in the nineteenth century, and became democratic only in the 20th century, after women and African Americans were allowed to vote, and on the other hand, Europe that was a continent broken up into many different nationalities, the pace of these different revolutions towards democracy varied greatly across countries.
Crucially in every European country the nationalism and economic revolution preceded the democratic revolution by several decades or more.
On democratisation of Tanzania and Africa in general; and without a strong economy and nationhood Mwalimu commented: “...Multiparty democracy is alien, it is a Western thing, a luxury Africa could not afford and it will create opposition among us, this is an imperialist dogma...” 
Yes, Mwalimu was right. Building multiparty democracy in a poor country is synonymous to nurturing division and hate between the opposition and the ruling parties; between different communities with different cultural origins such as tribes and clans who in most cases create political parties to secure their interests.
The fulfilment of Mwalimu Nyerere’s vision on the danger of multiparty democracy in Africa and Tanzania is today unveiling before our eyes when  democracy becomes a source of conflict among the people of nations in Africa.
This situation creates a political imbalance that destabilises most African countries trying to build a democracy. Practising Western democracy in Africa is now a fragile endeavour. Africa has witnessed the West trying to forcefully institute democracy in relatively peaceful countries.
Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia are countries that looked economically better and harmonious under their limited democracy and sometimes dictatorship; today hate and division and fragmentation are a real threat to these once tranquil countries. In the name of democracy these nations are falling apart.
Countries south of the Sahara like Kenya, Zimbabwe and Tanzania are also not spared either, where we see the effects of Western democracy at work in a poor country, creating hate and division among its citizenry.
According to Mwalimu  Nyerere: “... Tanzania, divided up into 112 distinct ethnic groups, is not a fertile ground for multiparty democracy.  Tanzania is not ready for multiparty democracy as would descend the country into tribal and regional infighting...”  Although Mwalimu did not believe in multiparty democracy but the power and grip of imperialism forced him and the ruling party to embrace multiparty system against the public views that rejected the system by 80 per cent. The global political wind of change was too much for Mwalimu and he surrendered.
 Even though Tanzania embraced (against its will) Western-type multiparty democracy in developing nations, I believe, after two decades of practice; if Mwalimu was alive, he would have continued believing that Africa wasn’t yet ready for this type of democracy.
Look at Tanzania today: multiparty democracy has only nurtured hate and divisions, and building economy is no longer a priority.
Capitalistic freedom promoted by secular ideology in which individuals became free to experiment whatever they want as long as it is a fundamental human right is very dangerous. Free democracy, free press, free everything, so free in a poor country only erodes community and national unity and brings division and tension.
Mwalimu believed in the kind of democracy that gives space to citizens to develop their nation. He wanted Africa to embrace democracy in single-party systems or multiparty systems that ensure governments of national unity, in which after any election parties would bury their differences and take national interests to a sweeter height. Keep the people together and work hard.
The kind of democracy practiced in China, Russia and the Arab countries that forces people to build the economy by instilling in the citizens the sense of nationhood, pride and upholding taboos of that nation could build national unity and tranquillity.
 As we continue to remember and cherish the Father of the Nation Mwalimu Nyerere, let us uphold his good vision, hopes and optimism on democracy to inspire us once again, nurture and keep our unity as a nation and as a people.
Dr Dalaly Peter Kafumu, MP (Igunga-CCM), is a former commissioner for minerals