Sunday, August 10, 2014
CA members cries with Ukawa, suggest ways to suppress their movements
In what is likely to be seen as a bleak future for the writing of a new constitution, some members currently attending the second phase of the Constituent Assembly (CA) sessions which resumed its business on Tuesday last week have suggested ways which would enable to suppress movements of the Coalition of Defenders of the People’s Constitution (Ukawa). They have proposed for an endorsement of a clause within the Constitution Review Act of 2013 which they say would deter such movement from happening as they seem to be distorting the general public about the whole process. They say as the constitution writing process is mainly governed by the said Act, and the standing orders in CA and therefore if a clause is endorsed it would be more appropriate to take stern measures against those who conduct illegal meetings outside the debating chamber. In line with endorsing a clause, the CA members have also suggested the suspension of fellow members who fails to attend the sessions for fifteen days without prior notice so as to allow their replacements by others who are willing to conduct the session for the rest of the remaining days. The CA members are of the view of the fact that the continued Ukawa’s movements who have boycotted the session are likely to disrupt the whole process of constitution writing which is a sensitive focus for the majority of Tanzanians. The group distanced itself from the CA since last April following bitter fallout with the majority CCM camp over the proposed three-government Union structure. CCM camp is for a two tier government Union. The call by CA members echoed on Tuesday this week when they were contributing their ideas over the proposed amendments on some clauses which have been made in the standing orders for the ongoing CA. Dr. Hamisi Kigwangala was the first to raise his concern and came up with the idea after having been disappointed by the recent two dialogues about the constitution which were held in Dar es Salaam on last Saturday and another one which was held on Monday. His worries on the dialogue held on Monday is after he noticed the participation of the members of the Constitution Review Commission led by its Chairman Judge Joseph Warioba, and queried why should these members join a platform and yet had already presented the draft, moreover the team is already banned. He said that such gatherings must be stopped as they are distorting the public and for that matter there should be made an amendment on the Constitution Review Act to suppress such things from happening.
He said such gatherings are misleading the people and there is no way except to stop them at all cost, however, he insisted and called on the Chairman Samwel Sitta to confront fellow old men, meaning Warioba and his team mate not to involve themselves in these gatherings. He questioned the rationale of their participation and yet the commission had already submitted their work which was commissioned by President Jakaya Kikwete and now is being discussed in CA. Dr. Kigwangala is of the view that, their views intervenes with the CA processes. On her part, another member Dr. Zainabu Gama suggested that any member of the CA who fails to attend the sessions for 15 days exclusively without any notice should be suspected for ever and other members should be elected to replace their positions. Dr. Gama was basically referring members from the 201 groups which was elected by the President and have virtually joined the Ukawa group should surrender their appointments for they have violated the rule that governed their status of Presidential appointment. She queried why such delegates are betraying the status of the oath which they took In view of this, she has asked for a quick actions which must be taken so as the law should deal with their irresponsible behaviors which they have shown before the eyes of Tanzanians whose minds has greatly focused in the new constitution. She noted that, those who conduct illegal meetings discussing about the constitution and the structure of the government outside the debating chambers have their own agenda. Another member, Ahamed Rashid Mohammed said that, the process of writing the constitution is entirely upon the CA to decide and no any other institution at this time when the draft is not yet handed over to the people for referendum polls. Earlier the CA committee on standing orders for the rights of CA members under the chairmanship of Pandu Ameir Kificho tabled the proposals for the amendments of certain clauses of the standing order which later were unanimously approved by CA members. He said reasons for amendment was to intensify the activities of the CA so as it should consume the exact 60 days which President Jakaya Kikwete granted without delays. Kificho worked in collaboration with his secretariat under the directives of the CA Chairman Samwel Sitta who commissioned the work to be accomplished prior to resumption of the CA session three weeks ago. The directive by the chairman is in line with the standing order of the CA No. 59(1) which gives him power to do so