Tanzania: We’ll Not Attend Magufuli Meetings, Vows Chadema

Leaders of the main opposition party Chadema in Coast Region have vowed to boycott all activities officiated by President John Magufuli in protest of his decision to ban political rallies.

They have termed the decision "outright violation of freedom of expression."

Chadema Coast Region secretary Casimir Mabina told a press conference yesterday that they have directed councillors and mayors from their party to shun all events graced by the Head of State.

"The President's recent move to suppress democracy in the country has lessened wananchi's faith towards him. We have opted not to cooperate with him to show that we can't be suppressed," said Mr Mabina.

He added that despite the party's support for the government's crackdown on corruption and embezzlement of public funds, they are worried about its crackdown on the opposition.

On Saturday, Chadema Dar es Salaam regional chairman Mwita Waitara, who is also a Member of Parliament for Ukonga, and Kinondoni Mayor Boniface Jacob didn't attend a ceremony to launch police reforms.

However, Mr Waitara accused the fifth phase government of sidelining the opposition when it comes to national issues.

"How could Mr Jacob attend the ceremony without being invited?" queried Mr Waitara.

Last Thursday, Dr Magufuli told politicians to articulate their agendas and ideas in Parliament and other official fora or wait for the next campaign period in 2020.

The announcement was faulted by the Coalition of Opposition parties (Ukawa) the following day. They termed the remarks unfortunate and should not have come from a President who came to power through the rule of law under the country's Constitution.

Ukawa is made of four parties: Chadema, CUF, NCCR-Mageuzi and the National League for Democracy.

Source: The Citizen