Thursday, January 5, 2017

An advocate disqualifies LHRC paper over language use

In an extra ordinary tension, the former Member of Parliament on CCM ticket has strongly challenged the language which has been used to express the research findings of a Legal and Human Right Centre (LHRC) saying that is not straight forward in a normal understanding of a paper presentation. Pindi Chana who is a lawyer and advocate by profession expressed her disappointment when contributing on a paper presented by LHRC at a breakfast debate organized by policy forum which was held recently at British Council in Dar es Salaam. According to Pindi, the paper by LHRC titled, “Perspective on human rights and governance in Tanzania” was full of a language which directly accuses Tanzania government over bad decisions it induces on issues related to human rights and governance. Pindi clarified that the language used to express the findings as highlighted in LHRC’s paper presentation directly attributes the government’s failure to deal with numerous issues arising in the country which are directly associated with human rights and good governance. However, although she praised the paper to be good but blasted on the language used while presenting the facts and noted that, this is a shame to the government as such facts are not in real situation bearing the fact that the government has been in the forefront caring for its people and the society at large and that is why peace and tranquility has prevailed in the country for longer. The argument that Pindi had raised queried if there was an official from the government side who was consulted for clarification among the respondents which specifically proved to be none. To her great dismay, she was surprised to have realized that after going through the paper which had been presented, there was no any data collected from the government side which could at least balance their findings to illustrate a fair play. In the LHRC’s paper the findings stated that, there is no Act of torture in Tanzania and that once one is tortured there are no legal mechanism on how to deal with the perpetrators accordingly. In addition to that, Tanzania government had been lacking data to base their argument that the situation of human rights has improved, according to the report although officials have been claiming that the situation of human rights in the country is improving this is baseless. Other findings in the LHRC report have it that the government delegates informed the member states on the positive development about the constitutional review process. However, LHRC noted with concern that the constitutional review process has not been as smooth as the government tried to depict and it had since stalled the process. Another confusing statement of a research findings whose language is wrongly implicated is where the LHRC’s findings says that, the government informed the member states on the Zanzibar election that was democratically conducted and all the political parties participated while the situation on the ground was not the case. The main opposition party in the Isles the Civic United Front (CUF) did not participate in the so-called democratic election. With this regard LHRC’s findings show that the government had misinformed the member states on the Zanzibar situation.  Another point she noted is where the LHRC report findings show that, the government submitted that there is wider provision of human rights education to the community and that it was lying. The truth about the matter is that, the whole work is being advocated by civil society groups which provides such education through different outreach programs and receives no momentary contribution from the government. “The language used by a presenter while analyising his report findings is not fair although he might be on the right track”, she said and added that such statements oppresses the government’s participation towards ensuring that peace and order is highly maintained in the country. On his part, LHRC’s Program Officer Paul Mikongoti responded to such a query and said that, even if the language is wrongly used, but the facts remain the same. He further said that, the government has not been cooperative with their centre in such a manner that they show reluctance whenever his centre is working on crucial issues for the general public and they don’t get clear answers whenever are investigating an issue.

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