Tuesday, July 29, 2014

SADC Countries for General Elections - Liberation Movements to Hold On?

2014 and 2015 are hectic years for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries as most of them are engaged in a sensitive exercise of changing guard in their leadership. Their ten-year tenures are either over or heading to the end. The countries are therefore constitutionally required to face the electorates to ask for their mandates. Expiry of ten years tenure has a double jeopardy for the politicians in retaining their parliamentary seats and that of the ruling party to enhance their status quos.

Under the current political climate where the opposition parties have now become a force to reckon with, is it a smooth run for the ruling parties? It is during this time the politicians become humble, down to earth and even prepared to shelve projects that may seem to be unpopular to the electorates so as to lure their votes. You may remember the Zambian leader Michael Satta during the electoral campaigns in Zambia; he vowed to flush out Chinese from his country if he were to be given a mandate to rule that country. Did he do that? Chinese are right now rebuilding that country through their heavy investments in mining. The SADC country in which Tanzania is one of the founder members is slated to go to the polls next year though the mood is very rife right now for aspirants to start the cutthroat political campaigns. Already countries like South Africa and Malawi have elected their leaders where ANC's Jacob Zuma has been brought back while Malawi's Joyce Banda could not retain her office.

Other countries like Mozambique and Namibia will go to polls before the end of this year. We could see early this month the Mozambican's FRELIMO presidential hopeful; Filipe Nyusi came to Tanzania to seek psychological support with the sister party CCM. The visit of the Mozambican FRELIMO's Presidential candidate to Tanzania has a special significance to those once liberation movements of Southern Africa, SWAPOs' Namibia, Angola's MPLA, Zimbabwe's ZANU- PF, South Africa's ANC on their quest of not only retaining their party's solidarity but also the great desire of enhancing the original spirit of Pan Africanism. They always think of their lost alley from their fold, the Zambia's UNIP which cannot make a comeback. The survival of these parties is based on the strong grassroots support they enjoy from their people. Angola's MPLA has fought for years the civil war engineered by UNITA's Savimbi and went on eventually winning.

FRELIMO's Renamo war by Alfonso Dlakama was so disastrous yet the gallant Mozambican people fought them away. The ANC split in the Polukweni Congress saw defection of some strong cadres of ANC yet the Party remained stronger. Namibia's SWAPO had nasty period when prominent politicians the likes of Hidipo Hamutenya, the then right hand man of Sam Nujoma, defected from SWAPO on the fight for the Presidency of Namibia after the retirement of Dr. Nujoma. It was in this spirit when these former liberation parties met at Windhoek's Hilton Hotel in August 2012 to discuss on regional unity and stability as consequence framed goals that can only be assured by the continued stay in power of former liberation movements.

It appears they have framed themselves as cathedrals of morality and developed a self-righteous life of their own - to remain in power with an assumption that framed goals, economic development, peace and stability can only be assured by the continued stay in power of former liberation movements.

Source: Tanzania Daily News

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