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Badilisha Lugha KISWAHILI

MP joins bandwagon against new constitution

30th December 2010

While some politicians, activists and academicians are agitating for the drafting of a new Union constitution, Chama Cha Mapinduzi legislator and prominent lawyer Nimrod Mkono has supported Attorney General Frederick Werema's stance against an entirely new constitution.

Mkono, who is the MP for Musoma Urban constituency, said in a telephone interview that he was surprised to see so many Tanzanians engrossed in the clamour for a new constitution.

He said there was no need to go for a new constitution simply to imitate Kenya, arguing that it would suffice for Tanzanians to settle for the required amendments to the current one.

“I am not quite sure what those demanding a new constitution are up to. I might even describe them as pseudo-academicians because you cannot draft an entirely new constitution as if the country has all along been administered without one. They should only identify what is required to be revised or added to the present constitution,” Mkono said.

He said since he belonged to legal profession, he would never support a proposal for the drafting of a new constitution owing to the weak arguments advanced, adding that Tanzanians should instead sit down and discuss how the present constitution could be improved.

Mkono said the President, Parliamentarians and other leaders took an oath to defend the constitution and not to amend it, hence agitating for a new one was tantamount to mounting a coup d'etat against the United Republic of Tanzania.

“If those clamouring for a new constitution do not realise the import of their demand, I shall try to make it clear to them. During the campaigns we neither promised Tanzanians to come up with a new constitution nor to discuss the issue. The five hundred thousand Musoma rural citizens who voted for me have never asked for a new constitution. Now you are instigating people to draft a new constitution. Do you want to stage a revolution?” he querried.

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