Chadema Secretary General Dr Willibrod Slaa has refuted reports that his party has been receiving sponsorship from the German government, noting that it has only been working closely with Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS,) a right-leaning German foundation.
Dr Slaa revealed this yesterday when introducing to the media delegates from different African countries who came to Tanzania for a three-day workshop organised by the German NGO.
Chadema is also believed to have ties with the UK ruling part, Conservative led by Prime Minister David Cameron, while CCM has close ties with several parties in the world including the Labour Party of England, the Chinese Communist Party and several former liberation movements in the southern African region.
A number of CCM MPs claimed late last year in the House that Chadema’s ties with some foreign governments had ill motives for the country.
During the press conference yesterday at party headquarters Dr Slaa dwelt on the Konrad Adeneur ties saying they were not state level but civic in character, denying any ‘regime change’ motives in that relationship.
“The truth is that we are working with a German NGO, whereas the ruling party works with other German NGOs,” he further explained.
He said the main focus of KAS in Tanzania is to foster democratic development and furthering the establishment of an effective multi-party system. “KAS supports processes which foster decentralisation, further local political dialogue and increase transparency of decision making processes,” he stated.
Dr Slaa said in order to foster the political and civic dialogue KAS cooperates closely with several political and civic organisations and partners, including Chadema, the International Democratic Union (IDU) and the Democratic Union Africa (DUA). “By strengthening these cooperations and processes, KAS contributes to local and national democratic development in Tanzania,” the Chadema leader noted.
Markus Brauckmann (KAS Media Africa) said that KAS Tanzania and Chadema have been cooperating since 2004 in various areas including capacity building for party cadres at a local level, programme support and structural coordination.
Similar to Chadema, he said, CCM has been getting support from German political institutions such as Christian Democratic Union (CDU),while Mwalimu Nyerere had excellent relations with the Social Democratic Party (SDP).
KAS, under the auspices of its regional media programme in Sub-Saharan Africa arranged a workshop in Dar es Salaam from 25 to 28 May drawing experts in the field of political communication.
Participants focused on exchange of experience of German and African experts concerning the potential of political communication in the digital age.
“The focus of presentations and speeches lies on the analysis of the current situation in KAS partner countries in sub-Saharan Africa as well as limitations and possibilities of modern political communication in differently open societies,” the German specialist noted.
Apart from Dr. Slaa, others in the workshop included Dr. Klaus Schüler (Federal general manager, CDU), Heather Thuynsma (Thuynsma & Associates, USA/South Africa) and Oliver Röseler (head of Internal Communication & Marketing, CDU).
Yet others were Markus Brauckmann (director, KAS Media Africa) and delegates from Senegal, Mozambique, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, South Africa and Ivory Coast.