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The East African : January 6th 2014
12 CONSTITUTIONAL CHANGE The EastAfrican NEWS JANUARY 4-10,2014 The ghost of G55 comes back to haunt lawmaking p≥ocess By JOSEPH MWAMUNYANGE Special Correspondent A MEMBER of the G55, a group of Tanzanian MPs who fell out with the ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) some 20 years ago over its advocacy of a threetier government for the Union, has supported recent report by the Constitutional Review Commission. Njelu Kasaka, who led President Kikwete has received a draft constitution, which will reintroduce the leadership code if passed. Picture: File Tanzania now turns to Arusha Declaration in war against graft D≥aft constitution ≥eint≥oduces leade≥ship code that ba≥≥ed public se≥vants f≥om engaging in business By RAY NALUYAGA The EastAfrican I n a fresh attempt to fight corruption, Tanzania is seeking to bring back the Leadership Code introduced by the 1967 Arusha Declaration for public servants. The declaration barred civil servants from engaging in private business and was abolished 21 years ago though the Zanzibar Declaration. Tanzania was listed among the 14 most corrupt countries in the world by Transparency International’s 2013 Global Corruption Barometer. The final draft constitution handed over to President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania and President Mohammed Shein of Zanzibar last week, if passed, will now see public servants barred from engaging in business while in office. According to the draft, anyone accused of violating the code will be suspended immediately, pending the determination of the matter in accordance with the laws of the land. The Arusha Declaration of 1967 among other things barred public servants from holding any directorship in a privately owned company. This will be the second time President Kikwete administration is seeking to reintroduce the code after a 2008 attempt through an Act of Parliament was met with stiff resistance from his party members, most of whom are directors of private companies while a few own multibillion-shilling businesses. Speaking during the 31st CCM birthday celebrations held in Zanzibar in February 2008, President Kikwete said he intended to start a process that would see business and politics separated to prevent conflicts of interest and corruption. In October 2009, while speaking in Butiama in Mara region where the founding father of the nation Julius Nyerere was born, he said the government was in the final stages of preparing a Bill that would see business and politics separated. Apart from barring public servants, who include elected officials, from engaging in business, the draft further prohibits a public servant from taking part in any determination of a matter in which the public servant’s spouse, child, relative, friend or any close associate is involved. Public servants are also barred from opening or owning a foreign bank account unless proper procedures, which include express permission from th the Bank of Tanzania are followed. According to data from the Swiss central bank, the amount of money that Tanzanians held in savings and deposit accounts in Swiss banks grew to $5.41 billion in 2012, up from $3.6 billion the previous year. However, opposition leader Freeman Mbowe dismissed the move, saying Tanzanians should not be stopped from operating foreign bank accounts. “It is a backward thinking to regulate people having a foreign bank account while the country has no restrictions on the amount of foreign currency that can enter the country,” he said. The draft further says a “It is a backward thinking to regulate people having a foreign bank account.” Freeman Mbowe public servant shall not request or receive a loan or any profit in a way and manner that shall undermine the reputation of the office. The draft proposes that any gift received by a public servant during the execution of his duties belongs to the country. The public servant shall be required to surrender the gifts to the Principal Secretary stating its type, val- OPPOSITION Opposition criticised provisions seeking to stop public servants from engaging in business, saying the move cannot guarantee an end to corruption. Opposition leaders noted that there are a number of corrupt government officials who are not businessmen According to Mr Mbowe, some people have foreign bank accounts as a way of investment, hoping to reap yields from interest and not stash away proceeds of corruption ue, reason for receiving them and the source. Public servants are also re- quired to declare their own wealth and debts as well as that of their spouses and children under 18 years to the ethics secretariat within 30 days after assuming office and the same period after leaving office. The draft further requires them to repeat the same exercise once every year during their tenure of office. The existing law requires public officers to submit to the ethics secretariat a written declaration of all properties, assets and liabilities in his or her name. Although the ethics law gives members of the public the right to examine the declaration records of their leaders, it prohibits the publication or dissemination of such information. the group in 1993 said the review commission report underscores some of the group’s recommendations on seperate governments in the Union. He said his group had recommended separate governments — Zanzibar and Tanzania Mainland, formerly Tanganyika, and an overall Union government. “The only difference is that the current draft gives the two governments more autonomy than we had suggested because G55 were of the opinion that we needed a president with more powers for the United Republic of Tanzania,” said Mr Kasaka. “However, this time round, the proposals in the draft want the two governments of Zanzibar and Tanganyika to have other powers vested in their leadership. What I believed and still hold on to is that this would weaken the presidency. The other danger I see is the fact that unless there are mechanisms to rein in those who act contrary to the Constitution, the proposed system would lead to the collapse of the Union, said Mr Kasaka He warned that unless there is a Supremacy Clause in the proposed constitution, the union could break up. Under the current Constitution, the Union government is also the government of the Tanzania Mainland. The demand for three separate governments was first raised by former Zanzibar president Aboud Jumbe. After being forced to resign in 1984, Mr Jumbe wrote a book titled, The Partnership; TanganyikaZanzibar Union: 30 Turbulent Years. The issue resurfaced in 1992 under the G55 initiative whose members were Mr Kasaka, former Cabi- net minister Tabitha Siwale, former MPs Maria Kahm, Edith Munuo, Mateo Quaresi, Arcado Ntangazwa, Sebastian Kinyondo, Charles Kagonji, Jared Gachocha, Paschal Degera, Philip Marmo and Saidi Kawayawaya. Other members have since passed on. “I presented this pri- vate motion to the deputy speaker, Pius Msekwa who was the temporary speaker because then speaker Adam Sapi was sick. The motion carried the signatures of 55 MPs. “Our argument was that since the islanders were seeking a sovereign entity, we should reclaim Tanganyika because the Zanzibaris were behaving like they were not part of the republic. The second issue was the claim by Zanzibaris that Tanganyika had changed to call itself Tanzania so as to undermine the aspirations of the islanders in all spheres of life,” said Mr Kasaka. Mr Kasaka said the Zan- zibar government had always refused to contribute to the running of the Union government, arguing that it could still do the same when the new constitution is passed. He added: “Even on ap- pointments, it is very difficult or next to impossible to appoint someone from the Mainland to work in Zanzibar but, for them to work on the Mainland is no big deal.” The Constitutional Re- view Commission recently presented President Jakaya Kikwete its final draft to be taken to the Constituent Assembly for further discussion. CLARIFICATION AND APOLOGY In The EastAfrican edition of November 30-December 6, 2013 we published an article under the title “Rwandan security firm loses licence” and inaccurately stated that the Fodey Security & Alarm System, had been suspended from carrying out security services in Rwanda upon the grounds that it was involved in terrorist activities. The article further stated that one of the officials of the security firm was on the run. We have since been informed that the firm was not engaged in terrorist activities as mentioned in the article and the official was not on the run. We apologise to our readers, Fodey Security and its officials for any embarrassment and anguish the article may have caused them.
December 30th 2013
January 13th 2014