Magufuli in tête-à-tête with Christian clerics

08Aug 2018
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Magufuli in tête-à-tête with Christian clerics

PRESIDENT John Magufuli yesterday met and held talks with clerics from the Christian Council of Tanzania (CCT) and Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC) at State house in Dar es Salaam.

President John Magufuli bids farewell to Christian Council of Tanzania leaders who visited him at State House in Dar es Salaam yesterday to introduce themselves. From-L: CCT Vice Chairman Bishop Dr Frederick Shoo (L), Chairman Bishop Alinikisya Cheyo, Second Vice Chairman Dr Jacob Chimeleje and Secretary General Canon Moses Matonya. Photo: State House

According to a press statement issued by director of presidential communications Gerson Msigwa, the clerics made the visit to introduce themselves to the president and discuss issues related to current relations between the government and Christian churches in the country.

The clerics promised to offer continued support to the government, ensure proper supervision of churches for the benefit of all Tanzanians, and also work on various religious challenges across the country, the statement said.

It quoted the religious leaders as commending government efforts to spur national development in areas like improvement of social services, which includes better infrastructure, better public transport, and proper supervision of the country’s abundant natural resources.

They are also said to have noted that the fifth phase government under President Magufuli has successfully restored discipline within the civil service and enhanced the fight against corruption and embezzlement of public funds.

In response, the president is quoted as saying his government “realises the huge contribution of churches and religious institutions towards development in the country.”

“We (government) will continue to work closely with you in our endeavours to change the welfare of Tanzanians,” he said.

He called on the Christian clerics to continue praying for the nation so that peace and tranquillity continues to prevail and flourish.

Magufuli also promised to work on the various challenges that local churches face, assuring them of total freedom but insisting that they preach peace and unity among Tanzanians.

“Don’t hesitate to notify me of any problems that you encounter in the course of executing your duties. I will always be there to assist you,” the president told the clerics.

The CCT delegation to State House comprised Bishop Anilikisa Cheyo (chairman), Bishop Fredrick Shoo (first vice-chairman), Bishop Jacob Chimeledya (second vice-chairman), and Reverend Moses Matonya (secretary general).

TEC’s delegation was led by Bishop Gervas Nyaisonga (president), and also included Bishop Flavian Kasalla (vice-president) and Father Charles Kitima (secretary-general.)