By Alfred Ngotezi, 13th November 2010 @ 12:00, Total Comments: 6, Hits: 4202
I would like to comment on a number of things that made these elections different from most, if not all past ballots in this country. To begin with, the polls have poked holes in our efforts at opinion polls.
REDET, for example, carried out a number of opinion polls predicting that CCM would win by a landslide. Their last poll gave CCM 71.2 and Chadema 12.3 per cent. Again, another polling company Synovate gave CCM a 61 per cent victory against Chadema’s 16 per cent.
I remember this sparked a heated debate in the media, pitying those favouring a CCM victory and those who prayed for Chadema’s triumph. Well, as President Jakaya Kikwete observed at his inaugural ceremony last week, this is quite natural in such situations.
However, the outcome of the elections brought contrasting realities. CCM won by 61.17 per cent against Chadema’s 26.34 per cent. Commendably, Synovate came closer to the final reality.
The only congruence with REDET’s forecast is the word victory, unfortunately which was a common prediction. Sheikh Yahya Hussein like every Tom and Dick on the street knew CCM would finally emerge winners. Thus people looked to science to ‘sensor’ the extent of both victory and defeat.
In return, this would provide an opportunity for contenders across the divide, to either exert increased efforts or lay down weapons and proclaim a silver platter victory.To a large extent, the REDET opinion poll misled the parties and the public in general and may have contributed in one way or another to their performance.
Who knows, CCM may have applied less efforts, convinced it was a pushover ballot. Likewise, Chadema may have put in more efforts believing they had a windward task, which may have resulted in winning more parliamentary and civic seats.I believe it is for the parties to hold postmortem sessions to identify the reasons that caused this eventuality.
My estimation points to a number of factors including a possibility of political partisanship and the probable use of off beam statistical inputs. Because an opinion poll that is so much divorced from the reality is worse than a wayside oracle.
Closely linked to this observation is another exasperating claim, largely manufactured by our body politik. There have been unverifiable claims that people voted with their Bibles and Korans, allegedly along religious lines.
When I first heard these allegations I told myself; ‘hang on a sec boy, these are serious claims’ and went nosing around. To my surprise, nothing like that seemed to have gone adrift. I recognize the gruelling prospects of creating our own Lebanon or Iraq, where religious intolerance has butchered millions of people. I am also a staunch believer in the adage that a stitch in time saves nine.
Yet to claim that Tanzanians voted on religious lines this time around is a dangerous overstatement, because that is not what happened. This argument would hold water if the defeated ruling party candidates, for instance, lost their seats to people of the other faith. The reality on the ground is that religion was not the lowest common determinant.
Still, Christians Anthony Diallo and Lau Masha of Mwanza lost their seats to other Christians, Samson Kiwia and Ezekiel Wenje, respectively. It is a trend that reverberated throughout the country.
In predominantly Moslem Zanzibar people voted according to their political backgrounds, not faith. In Pemba, for example, the vote was 100 per cent for CUF, in line with their decades-long traditions of voting for opposition parties.
The CUF, too, garnered many votes along the coastal zone because that is where they are more established. It is a fact that they spent more campaign time and resources there than anywhere else.
Likewise, Chadema are stronger in northern Tanzania. No wonder Dr Wilbrod Slaa spent more time there winning more votes. For the versatile CCM, they turned the whole of Tanzania into a small battlefield, hence their decisive victory.
Speaking at his recent investiture President Kikwete said he addressed over 700 campaign rallies throughout Tanzania in one month, which explains his evenly distributed victory.It is also a fact that the seemingly militant youth who thronged town halls until the election results were announced in Mwanza, Arusha, Kigoma, Dar es Salaam and elsewhere, bore no religious mark.
If we want to contain this apparent radicalism, we ought to identify their characteristics. It is a changed political landscape. Since most of them are jobless, government should review its priorities and make job-creation its main brief.
Amazing, what a cover up. It was vivid that your dearest chadema brother was igniting religious. Even a fool could. Stop cleansing him. He is indeed tainted. How could you start opening the pandorabox. Please apologise!
Alfred, you should learn your lessons from your brother Slaa.
Dont pretend to be nuetral, if someone reads between the lines of your article you sound sectarian. You either use this public sphere honestly or else leave it for others to do justice to dissemination of information. What is wrong if you say the truth that Slaa was all out to plunge the country into religious mayhem. We know this dirty game of mixing religion and politics was imported in the country
Those newspapers which were promoting sectarianism should be taken to task. Mr JK do something, Bwana.
Shame upon those who were using religion to destroy us?
I think guys have hit Alfred below the belt. I challenge the two fellows above, if at all, to show cause why Dr. Slaa is Alfred's brother at all. They should tell the public why he and him are related. Let them say if Dr. Slaa can spell Alfred's given name, to begin with....and vice versa. This is slanderous. I think people should argue about issues raised.
Alfred's argument was that Tanzania remained one country during the fierce campaigns, during the election and even after. If guys are contesting this opinion that is fine. Let them give alternative views. That is couth civility, not the culture of name calling.
I think guys should remember that everyone in this republic has got his/her own small territory. It is a crime to transgress into one's realm by way of uttering falsehoods against them. Those provoking others by hiding under the disguise of anonymity should realise that science is watching them.
I urge them to keep to the rules of the game or throw in the towel.
oh my load, what a pity that religion is taking a front seat in politics. However Alfred why cant you call a spade a spade and spoon a spoon.
You are trying hard to show that both religions contributed to the political wave that almost wreck the country. Why not criticise the pastoral letter. Go and read the letter and see for yourself the mess, openly showing Slaa is a mab of God. So a
Man of God. You are funny since you have forgotten you wrote to defend the Catholic church.
now we are challenging, are you supporting CCM or catholic church?
Please this week in your article advise Slaa to stop living in poli
If you think every thing in religious line, you will read the CHADEMA and CCM saga in the coming appointment and see the lines of religious motivated appointment.
See to it the promise of the VICE PRESEDENT only yesterday, he promises to see it in the near future.
The first chosen MP by the power vested in our Mr. President tells us where he is heading and I hope the next will be Mr. MAKAMBA the remaining Six we shall see.
We are somewhat covering our eyes to what is coming up. We need to discuss the issue openly and see who is what and accept that we have our own weaknesses during political rallies and during governance. Let's stop becoming hypocrites and be open to each other as Tanzanians
NOW EAT YOUR WORDS
Those of you who believe Alfred is a sellout to Chadema or Dr. Slaa because of this article, then they have not done their assignment properly. Please see his comments in the next issue of the SUNDAY NEWS titled : Chadema should prove rigging allegations or climb down.
They should eat their words because Alfred is a principled journo.
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