Monday, 18 June 2012

Chadema prepares for 2015 elections


The opposition Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) has started preparations for the 2015 general elections, its national chairman Freeman Mbowe has said.

Chadema National Chairman Freeman Mbowe

“Whoever wants to run for any position should now send an application, curriculum vitae and passport size photograph to the party headquarters for screening,” Mr Mbowe told a news conference in Dodoma on Sunday.

He said Chadema would not wait for those who fail to secure nomination during preliminary polls for councillorship or parliamentary seats in other political parties as was the case in the past. Recruiting people who have failed in other parties leads to indiscipline and conflicts within the party.

“We want clean and diligent people who are ready to work as a team and respect the party’s constitution,” he stressed.
However, observers view the move as having been influenced by Mr John Shibuda’s antics, especially after being quoted as saying that he had plans of running for president come 2015.

Meanwhile, Mr Mbowe alleged students in universities and other institutions of higher learning who are members of Chadema were being harassed or expelled. He said that he would call upon the government to protect such students to ensure that they complete their studies.

“We are going to move a motion asking the government to present a statement on protection of such students in the National Assembly,” he said during a meeting with students who are Chadema members. Mr Mbowe also used the opportunity to wish well students who begin their final examinations on Monday.

He asked the students to return to their home villages and open Chadema branches. “We want to have a party branch in every ward and village in the country. Our strategy is to reach the masses at the grassroots,” Mr Mbowe told the students.

He urged the students not to fear anybody in the political struggle. “Our goal is to form the government soon and lead this country,” he said, adding that: “Personally I have five cases pending in court.” He said every month he has to appear before courts two or three times.

Reading the students’ message, Ms Pasquiha Ferdinand, a second year Barchelor of Education student at St. John University, said Chadema members risked expulsion. She said expulsions started at the University of Dodoma (UDOM) and St. John appears to be the next in line. Ms Ferdinand also asked Chadema to assist students with cases in meeting legal costs.

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