Saturday, 2 May 2009
Let the power that be borrow a leaf from Mengi on corruption
AT last names are openly named! When Hon. Harrison Mwakyembe named Rostam Aziz as a suspect behind Kagoda profligacy, many scratched their heads. Some thought it was just politics. Others said: there must be something truly fishy. Others thought the government would wake up and bring him to book. Mwakyembe is a lawyer and an MP who knows what he is doing.
Before long, Reginald Mengi, the Executive Chairman of IPP, massively and openly weighed in with more damning allegations. He minced no words. He averred: Rostam, Yusuf Manji, Jayantkumar Chandubhai Patel (Jeetu Patel) who is facing EPA charges, Tanil Somaiya, and Subash Patel are the most corrupt people in Tanzania.
Today I’ll specifically look at two -Rostam and Manji. They’ve been stealing thunder when it comes to corruption save the government has pretended not to hear or see!
No doubt. The two are CCM bigwigs just like Mengi himself.
What makes things worse is the fact that the duo has been mentioned, though not openly, in almost all multi-million scams. I still remember how Manji was alleged to have swindled wananchi’s money, thanks to his business connections with NSSF. Though this was swept under the carpet, we still have more questions than answers.
Manji also tried hand in politics when he vied for Kigamboni Constituency backed by Yusuf Makamba - CCM’s secretary general who is said to have thick but suspicious bond with the duo.
As for Rostam, it’s an open secret. He has been cowering before allegations connecting him with EPA theft thanks to being the mind behind Kagoda. Refer to the recent revelations by Bhyidinka Michael Sanze, a lawyer who presided over EPA authorization by Benjamin Mkapa - former president engrossed in many scams.
Also Rostam was linked with Richmond, thanks to his Caspian Company’s address being used by Richmond. He too was named by Ibrahim Msabaha as PM Edward Lowassa’s Arab in Richmond scam.
What damns so as to create doubts is the fact that, the duo, despite being mentioned in many scandals, still has much influence in CCM. They are awarded many lucrative tenders and other projects. They, too, are CCM’s financiers or donors. And this is the reason that forced the Father of the Nation Mwl. Julius Nyerere to sarcastically aver that CCM has been taken by corrupt business people. Who can step in Nyerere’s shoes.
Given that the government has been dragging feet in dealing with the buggers behind Kagoda, now it is aware who those buggers are. Will it go on keeping mum and acting indifferently as it sits on the same.
Silence is gold. But sometimes, it is admission of guilt. When Rostam was confronted by the media to shed light onto Mengi’s allegations, he’s quoted as thus. ’’Mengi is full of jealousy, hatred and what not. There is no way I can help him except to pray God and ignore all, for it is enough a punishment for him. Due to how I was brought up, I cannot quarrel with an old man.’’
Do such gimmicks address the allegations really. Let’s call shorts to white washing and be serious especially when allegations are damningly serious like these.
Though it can be lightly and wrongly perceived as racism and hatred for Mengi to name five Tanzanians of Asian decent as the most corrupt in the country, there is truth in this. Why should it be racism or hatred to aver they are corrupt but not when it comes to owning our economy Why not when they’re given tenders and other preferential treatments.
As Rostam once said that those alleging he is corrupt are labouring under racism, petty jealousy and hatred, but again, is it racism really or corruption.
Suspects should mount reasonable defence in lieu of taking camouflage under the colour of their skin. For example, if someone says Indians own a big chunk of national housing, will this be referred to as racism? If one avers that Indians own over 75% of commerce in the country, will it be branded hatred. If one avers that Indian and Chinese illegal immigrants and hawkers are favoured by authorities, will this be jealousy.
Indians own almost every lucrative business. And now they’ve already penetrated into politics, thanks to rotten takrima law. They live in government houses whilst its workers make do on the outskirts of the city. They’ve remained holier than us since they were brought in by colonialists.
We well know. Indian business moguls are almost behind every stinking lucrative government tender. Refer to the radar, presidential jet purchase, NSSF, Richmond, EPA and what not.
Many will wonder why. It is simple. Corrupt government officials prefer to do dirty business with Indians. They can not divulge their secrets. They’re easy to intimidate and repatriate when things go wrong as it happened in Chavda scam. So indigenous ’fisadis’ are left out of the big picture.
And if you look at whom Tanzania prefers to award citizenship to, you’ll find that Indians outsmart others. They still do the same- being middlemen-the job for which colonialists brought them. When white colonialists left and black ones took over, the role of Indians remained the same almost everywhere in Africa. Go to Kenya, Malawi, South Africa and elsewhere. Indians are still doing the same job-weakening the indigenous for the good of corrupt rulers.
So to avert wasting time, if Kikwete could take a leaf from Mengi, our war on corruption would make more sense than it is today when it is but white washing.
In other words, corruption in Tanzania is like ’mduara’ dance. It’s conspiracy between venal rulers and their corrupt guests. It’s time to rally behind Mengi to see to it that those ’fisadis’ are not harming him. Shall they, Mtikila’s gabacholi era will be latched onto. And the government must stop its indifference. The ’isadis’ it has been asking for are now given pro bono.
Source: Thisday April 28, 2009.
Posted by NN Mhango at 03:07