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Defection a democratic right, says Prof Lipumba

13th March 2012
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CUF Chairman Prof Ibrahim Lipumba

The Civic United Front (CUF) Chairman Prof Ibrahim Lipumba yesterday said that defection of members of the party does not trouble him because they are just exercising their democratic right.

Briefing journalists in Dar es Salaam a day after he arrived from the US where he had been for about six months attending meetings on the world economy and democracy, he said: “I am not troubled by the defections to other parties or establishing of a new political party because it is their right.”

He said where people are working together in a party there must be differences since they have different perceptions.

However, he insisted that CUF required disciplined members whose decisions were derived from legal meetings.

“Once decisions are made from lawful meetings, I must accept them, even if I don’t support them. What I am supposed to do is to uphold and implement them. This is how things run in political parties,” he noted.

He said Tanzanians should learn that any decision within a party was supposed to follow constitutional and meeting procedures. In building democracy within the political parties and to have strong parties, it is important to have discipline, he said, adding, the democratic parties which want to bring changes must have discipline.

“This is why from the beginning we were among those who supported having private candidates in the country, so that those who misbehave can vie for any post as private candidates,” he said.

According to him, it is important to maintain true and sustained democracy which would create disciplined political competition.

He pledged to stand for the party which stands for people’s equal rights in economic, social and politic issues, sensitising people to demand for their rights everywhere.

Responding to questions from journalists about the mushrooming of political parties in the country, Prof Lipumba said the key requirement is rigorous evaluation of the parties using the set criteria before their registration.

Meanwhile Prof Lipumba said that good governance for any country will only be realised if it has a democratic system, saying that among the things he researched on while in the US is how the country can have democratic system which will help in building the economy.

“Although the country recently celebrated 50 years of Independence, it has yet to defeat poverty. So I did thorough research on what to do in order to help promote democracy to enable the country build its economy,” he noted.

He called upon Tanzanians to participate fully in the process of writing a new constitution.

“We have been given the opportunity to present our views on what we want included in the new constitution. So it is better for each one of us to use the chance effectively,” Lipumba said.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN
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