Butiku calls for dialogue on justice, civil liberties

18Jan 2020
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
Butiku calls for dialogue on justice, civil liberties

THE Executive Director of the Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation (MNF) Joseph Butiku has called on Tanzanians to continue fighting for justice, more democratic space and freedom of the press, saying such liberties cannot be served on the platter.

Executive Director of the Mwalimu Nyerere Foundation (MNF) Joseph Butiku

Addressing journalists and media stakeholders here yesterday during a symposium on building a peaceful nation as the country moves towards general election in October this year, Butiku argued that freedoms are not easily granted but fought for.

The MNF CEO challenged journalists in particular to be at the forefront of the agitation for justice and better working environment for themselves and other Tanzanians.

However, he stressed that the fight for civil liberties in the country must be done through dialogue and other non-violent means and not the contrary.

“Justice does not come easily; however, it is gained through dialogue guided by wisdom,” he said.

He went on to suggest that for such dialogue to succeed, parties involved must be ready to be considerate of the interests of others and allow room for compromise in the process. 

“Don’t relent in the fight for justice because justice cannot be denied; it can only be delayed,” he said.

Butiku argued that since the people are the source of political power and leadership, they have the right to freely express themselves on matters touching their liberties.

He added humour to his otherwise serious speech by noting that he will be disappointed to know that Tanzanians have despaired in their fight for justice when alive or dead.

“I am now 81 years old. Even in death, I will be disappointed if you give up the fight for justice,” he said.

 Arusha Press Club (APC) chairman Claud Gwandu said the free media can contribute immensely to the development of Tanzanian society.  He urged journalists to exercise impartiality and balanced reportage before, during and after the October polls.

The scribes, Gwando said, must be guided by patriotism as they execute their duties especially during electioneering periods when some sections of society tend to be polarized because of politics.