Monday, March 27, 2017

Poetry Night at Soma:For Better or Verse-31/03/2017

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Caine Prize for African Writing in Dar es Salaam

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Exhibition: Mlango wa Navushiku

The Politics of Good Cops and Bad Cops in Tanzania

The Politics of Good Cops and Bad Cops in Tanzania

Chambi Chachage

The presidential honeymoon is effectively over in Tanzania. A chorus from seemingly disparate quarters is now questioning the President for protecting a public official who appears to trump the rule of law. Yet the Presidency is holding its ground on the matter.

We are referring to a recent incident in which the Regional Commissioner(RC) of Dar es Salaam is apparently seen on CCTV storming into the offices of Clouds Media Group with armed policemen at night. Our purpose, however, is not to address the ''hullabaloo over this RC and allegations on his school certificates. The Citizen  has aptly contextualized it in its Tuesday's editorial
Our focus is on how the politics of populism plays out through a tactic that is analogous to the 'good cop, bad cop' technique in detective movies. In such a scenario, one cop appears tough on the interrogated person while another cop seems soft. As a result, the person may obliviously open up to the seemingly sympathetic cop. 

In those situations the cops work as a team. What we don't know is whether in Tanzanian politics, the President and his appointees work jointly when issuing contradictory orders. All that we know is that one of the directives ends up being cheered and another jeered.
Take, for example, the case of the Minister responsible for Justice and Constitutional Affairs who issued what The Citizen refers to as "his controversial 'no birth certificate, no marriage' order". It didn't take more than a day for his boss to rescind the order. "When I heard this yesterday", the President is quoted in The Citizen as saying, "I was shocked... I was shocked, honestly I was shocked."

Yours Truly applauded. So did many other Tanzanians. Yet the Minister has not resigned. More significantly, what do such contradictory directives tell us about the communication strategy of the Cabinet. Why should the President only hear about it the other 'yesterday' i.e.  'just after the fact' like the rest of us out here? 

Could it be that one party is playing the ''good cop at the expense of the other party? Or the center is not holding hence the decentralized parts are moving in their own directions? Either way, what effects does all this have on the integrity and legitimacy of the Presidency?
It may be way too soon to assert that there is a crisis of legitimacy in the country. However, the way the President and the Minister responsible for Information will jointly - or separately - handle the case of the Regional Commissioner of Dar es Salaam may give us a glimpse of what to expect. Probably unaware that his boss was publicly defending the Commissioner elsewhere, the Minister issued a strong statement on the incident and formed a probe team.

Now the Minister surely knows what the President said. What will this young Minister do? Yesterday he tweeted: "No longer at Ease!"

Who will be a 'good cop' this time if and when 'Things Fall Apart'?

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Mdahalo wa Kitaifa kuhusu Lugha ya Kufundishia

Karibuni katika Mdahalo (Debate) wa Kitaifa utakaofanyika Nkrumah siku ya Jumapili tangu saa 8 mchana hadi saa 12 jioni.

Kwa muda mrefu sasa, tumekuwa tukiandika, tukijadiliana na kulumbana kuhusu matumizi ya lugha ya Kiswahili. Iwe katika kuitumia kama lugha ya kufundishia, au kutolea hotuba katika mikutano au hata mawasiliano rasmi katika maofisi ya Serikali na Mashirika yake n.k.

Katika mijadala hiyo kuna wanaosema kuwa, tutumie Kiswahili na kuna wanaosema tuachane na Kiswahili tutumie Kiingereza.

Siku ya Jumapili tarehe 19, ni mara ya kwanza ambapo pande mbili zinazokinzana zitakutana ili kubishana kwa HOJA.
Ukumbi wa Nkrumah umekuwa na sifa ya kuwa na mijadala yenye kuleta tija na mabadiliko mioyoni au vichwani mwa watu, wawe viongozi au waongozwaji. Karibu ili ushiriki katika utamaduni huu wa Nkrumah na utoe mchango wako, kwa hoja za kitaaluma.

Kwa wale ambao mtashindwa, Mdahalo huo utarushwa mubashara na Vyombo vyetu vya habari vya TBC, ITV, Azam TV, Star TV, na Clouds, ikiwa ni pamoja na radio zake.




Prof. Aldin K. Mutembei (PhD) 
Taasisi ya Taaluma za Kiswahili 
Kampasi ya Mwalimu J.K. Nyerere 
Chuo Kikuu cha Dar es Salaam

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