Sunday, December 14, 2008

When they were chickens....

At one point, I thought we have had enough with the East African federation debate. Apparently not. This thing has a very long history that most people tend to forget. One of them is that at one point in the early sixties, we wanted the federation there and then - immediately, but Mzee Kenyatta stalled. In fact, we were accused (particularly by Kenyans) as being irrational in rushing into something that will not work. Now things have changed!  

As you know, even before independence[I think in 1960], the three East African leaders declared that they should have a Federation before the end of 1963, and formed a committee to frame a constitution. But the effort was not followed up and met resistance, particularly from Kenya. 

From Mwalimu book (Uhuru na Umoja),  we read that, tt the end of April 1964, the back-benchers of the Kenya Parliament called a meeting of backbenchers of the Uganda and Tanzania Parliaments to consider the non-action on the federation.  The Uganda members failed to respond, but the M.P.s from the other two countries met and decided to send delegations to all three Heads of Government urging an immediate federation.  On 10 May 1964, President Nyerere received them, in the presence of the Press, and welcomed their initiative. Other Presidents did not.  Lack of a similar welcome from the other two leaders meant that no progress was made. This is what Mwalimu said on the occassion: 

First of all let me congratulate the KANU Parliamentary Group for their initiative in calling the meeting of Parliamentary Party representatives to discuss East African Federation.  Your meeting is an indication that when the governments of our countries do not act fast enough for the people, then the people’s representatives in Parliament will use their powers under the constitutions of our respective countries in order to hasten the carrying out of the people’s wishes.

The resolution passed by your meeting should be a cause of great satisfaction to all those in East Africa who genuinely desire unity.  I appreciate the sense of urgency which emanates from this resolution and the accompanying memorandum.  I entirely agree that unless unity is achieved within a reasonable time after independence it will become increasingly more difficult to attain

 There is no use pretending, however, that Federation will immediately solve all the difficulties now facing our various countries.  In its early days it will almost certainly present new problems as we work our the practical arrangements and decide on priorities of policy and development.  However carefully the inauguration documents are drawn up, and however carefully the institutions of unity are prepared, strains and stresses are inevitable at the beginning of any federation or union.  Neither will there be any shortage of people who will try to make capital out of the early difficulties of any form of unity in East Africa.  It will there be any shortage of people who will try to make capital out of the early difficulties of any form of unity in East Africa.  It will be our children’s children who will really see the great benefits of Federation; we ourselves are quite likely to see as many of its difficulties as its advantages.

We must also be quite clear about one other thing.  Once a Federation has been established, it is established for all time.  It can move for greater unity, but it cannot disintegrate.  There can be no question of dissolution in relation to a Federation of East Africa which is freely established by the will of the people.  The Federation will become the sovereign unit which has to be defended at all costs, just as our separate countries are now the units to which all citizens owe allegiance.

For these reasons, nations should only enter into a Federation when they can do so with a whole-hearted and unqualified commitment to it.

There is nothing wrong in not being ready to make that commitment; but to enter discussions, or a new political unit, without the commitment would be to do enormous damage to the whole future of Africa.

It is, therefore, in the full awareness of the difficulties and implications of Federation that I state quite categorically that the Government of the United Republic and myself are fully committed to entering immediately into a Federation with Kenya and Uganda, or with Kenya, or Uganda, alone.  I am confident that the people of this Union are equally ready to make this commitment. 

In saying this, I fully realize that we may not all be at the same state of readiness to enter a Federation now.  If any of our countries are not able to take this step with full commitment it is infinitely better that they should wait.  Naturally, the United Republic hopes that this is not the case, but if it is then the Government of this country supports your proposal that those countries which are ready should federate, leaving the door open for those which are not ready to enter when they are in a position to do so without reservations.  It is better that two countries should federate now if three cannot.

We can make rapid progress on this if we are clear in our own minds what are the essentials and what are the inessentials of unity.  Having done that we should go ahead immediately we have agreed on the essential matters, leaving the others to be dealt with after Federation.  I believe that there is already a broad measure of agreement on these fundamental questions.  And I am quite certain that if we in Africa wait until all the problems between our countries, or all the internal problems for our separate countries, are solved, then we shall never get any Federation or any form of unity at all.  Let us in East Africa deal with these problems together, as one Federation.  And let us do it now.

If  Mzee Kenyatta decides to call a meeting to discuss the action proposed in your resolution, I shall most certainly attend.

Thank you, gentlemen, for your courtesy in coming to see me today.


7 comments:

mokes O. gama (swahilian@hotmail.com) said...

Thank you Mr.Makamba for this wonderful piece. The continuation for a debate on this EAC issue is so important that our leaders in Tanzania are advisedly reading peoples/Tanzanians views; I hope. History and your article have shown that in retrospect, Nyerere and the Tanzanians in general were forefront into this EAC idea. Kenyans/tta were stalling. Exactly how does it change champion today to have the Kenyans as the vanguard? I don't know. Maybe it's their problems of land, economy and the 'social fabric' that they seek greener pastures of Tanzania today. For the EAC to experience reality, Kenya, much more than others has to change its land policies; a near impossible task that will require changing their constitution-Bill of Rights. Kenya's constitution after independence recognized and protected the private property(land) in an elaborate Bill of Rights which ensured that the rights of the White minority are safeguarded. These 'Whites' today owns (for life) 9% of all 17% of arable land in Kenya in what is called 'White Highlands.' About 37%is occupied by pastoralists who counts poorly in the government’s sources of income. The other percentage of land is arid with either little or nonentity of use. So Tanzanians can now see the reasons why are Kenyans so demanding now for the EAC. Should we really change our land policies in imitation of Kenya's for EAC to blossom? I could say 'No' in many languages to emphasize the negation. They (Kenya) have to change. And changes to them means adopting land policies, not necessarily similar to Zimbabwe/Mugabe-confiscating from the elite, distributing fairly to all, but possibly their constitution which has for years protected and worshipped the few, for the suffering and neglect of many. It must be noted that Nyerere was so confident with the idea of EAC in the early 60s before the drafting of Kenya's Constitution which introduced land title deeds and therefore individual ownership of land (for life). To be cont'd.........

Anonymous said...

"I entirely agree that unless unity is achieved within a reasonable time after independence it will become increasingly more difficult to attain" (Mwalimu Nyerere Nineteen sixties )

That statement really hold water today, because that reasonable time after independance has already passed away,in all these years( 47 years of independance now) we have grown to have very broadly differences in terms of everything (culture,economy,respect to each other,policies,securities,etc)therefore it is difficult now to attain EAC, Nyerere told them lets do it now, they did not want to listen to him, yule mzee alikuwa anaona mbali, sasa wanaanza kulia lia, waswahili tunasema asiye sikia la mkuu, huvunjika guu, sasa kazi kwao sisi tunayeya tu, polepole lakini iko siku tutakuwa fresh
Jembe

Anonymous said...

1.Kufungwa kwa mipaka yetu na nchi jirani in 80's mpaka Mzee Ruksa alipoamua kuifungua tena.

2.Kuhujumu taifa zima, kwa Azimio la Arusha, ambalo halikubagua waliomo na wasiomo.

3. Siasa ya Ujamaa na Kujitegemea, Kuvaa the same, kula the same, na kunywa the same, hatimae akatupelekea pale ambapo sipo, taifa zima kuwa na njaa, na kinachofuatia hapo baadae, kula yanga chungu, maduka ya ushirika, ndio kama hizi tunazoziona hadi leo, bado wanafunzi wake wako sober, ufisadi.

4. Kuhamisha nguvu ya utawala nzima ya nchi, kiuchumi, kijamii, nk toka kwa watu kupeleka kwa chama, balozi wa nyumba kumi kumi , Taifa la mashushu, kila mtu kumchunguza mwenzako, Udaku na badala yake kuondoa fikra za kimaendeleo, na badala yake kutafuta nani ni adui kwa mazingira ya kuindeleza nchi???, athari zake ni kubwa, ubovu wa elimu, maendeleo, nk. Na kama tunavyofahamu ELIMU ni msingi na ufunguo wa maisha-JK Nyerere, kwa wenye msimamo na misingi ya kisiasa kama ya hapo juu niliyoitaja kwenye kipengele hiki.. NINI HATMA YAKE??

5. Mwisho inakuja protectionism, HOFU ya kila kitu, ya hiki kile, wageni, wategesha uchumi, na mengineyo mengi tu, na athari yake tunaiona hivi sasa, vile vile. Ndio hatimae kukosa ile mashindani katika biashara, tunabakia na umbu umbu, hatima yake makampuni ya nje(wawekezaji), kutoana mafala, kutudhulumu(malipo ya kodi), na kutuaibishi kwa incompetent yetu katika governance, ambayo hatunayo!! KATULAZA KIAKILI. Generation W. Hata kuwa na passport ni HOFU????(Muhujumu uchumi, utaleta mambo ya kigeni, nk), na msingi wake hasa usifichuke kiakili, kielimu, usione ya watu, ukajua ubaya wako.

6. Alikua mjamaa nab ado alikua ni mdini ??? Wapi na wapi? Ambao kinyume na kanuni za waanzilishi na mentua wake Mao wa China na Karl Max.

7. Wengi watadai, aliweza kuondoa ukabila, Ukabila upi ? aliourithi ? Nchi ilikua hapo mwanzo haina ukabila? nchi pekee mojawapo barani Africa yenye makabila mengi kuliko nchi jirani au Afrika kwa ujumla, makabila 120 kwa pamoja, na mikoa mingi, kwa hiyo sioni sababu ya kuwepo kwa kabila lolote kuwa wenye nguvu katika nchi na hatimae serikali.
Mimi nina imani kubwa yote haya yameletwa kutokana na siasa duni za Nyerere, tulikua na nafasi maridhawa lakini tulijikwamisha, kwa nyanja za kila kitu.
Mwisho tukirudi kwenye mada, tunahitajia huu muungano zaidi hivi sasa kwa manufaa ya hii nchi, tuanze kuondoka na siasa za kinyume na tusonge mbele, kuliko kuukimbia all together, tutaathirika ipasavyo, yako mengi tunayokubaliana kuliko ambayo hatukubaliani, lakini inabidi tujifunze kuucheza mpira na ulimwengu huu, la sivyo, hili taifa litajikuta katika sehemu mbaya hapo baadae, Mwisho Uhuru halisi ndio huu tuliokua nayo, hii kwetu ni nafasi ya pili, baada ya kwanza kuititiga na siasa na fikra duni.

Siasa za ujamaa na kujitegemea, ni mzuri kwenye karatasi na siyo kimatendo..kwa hiyo fikra na siasa za JK hazikufanikiwa hata kwa asilimia 80%, na ukija kwenye umoja watanzania ni wabantu asilimia 90 naa, ni watu wa ushirikiano, makubaliano na maingiliano toka hapo awali, sasa umoja huo, JK kauleta au kaja kausisitizia, nitampa mkono wa mbali kwa pointi ya pili.

Mwalimu alikua na fantasies , kwa maneno ya ukerewe, na hakuwa wa hali halisi, kama angekua hai bali angekua pengine mzuri kwenye vyombo vya dola la kimataifa kama UN, au NGOs na siyo kuongoza nchi. mama Theresa kafanya mazuri zaidi India, kuliko marehemu.

Tuwe wakweli ni vitu gani vikubwa tulivyovipata katika hii nchi zaidi ya maneno(RHETORICS), katika utawala wa marehemu, na tusiwe wenye kufuatana(mfuato wa kipofu) tu, zidumu fikra ndio, zidumu vitendo na mazingira au ziliendelezwe????

Hoja hujibiwa na Hoja.

Anonymous said...

Katika kuongoza nchi kuna mapungufu na mafanikio, kuna nchi nyingi tu za Africa hazikufuata mtindo wa Nyerere katika kuongoza nchi zao lakini sioni cha zaidi walichotupita, kwa hiyo kufanikiwa au kutofannikiwa ni assessement tu jinsi unavyo mu assess, mimi binafsi yangu na mu assess kuwa Mwalimu kafanya kazi yake vizuri, sina haja ya kuandika orodha ndeeeefu ya mambo ganni mazuri kafanya au yapi mabaya kafanya maana watanzania wanayajua, sasa hivi cha msingi ni kulinda Umoja wetu na tuangalie mbele dunia inaendaje kuliko kuanza kulumbana mwalimu alifanyaje hiki au kile, tuna chance ya kurekebisha mabaya ya Mwalimu au hata kiongozi mwengine yeyote aliyekuja na vile vile kama kizazi kipya na muono tofauti vile vile tuna chance ya kuendeleza mambo yote mema ya viongozi wetu waliopita, tujenge umoja upendo na amani halafu tusonge mbele, kulumbana kuhusu Nyerere sasa hivi haitasaidia kuikomboa nchi, tuchukulie kuwa hii ni transition period mabaya tuweke sawa mazuri tuendeleze
Jembe

Anonymous said...

Jembe, Hoja hojibiwa na Hoja, na hoja yako inaonekana haina msingi na mwelekeo.

Hiki ni kipengele cha historia, kinachojadiliwa hapa kutokana na msimamo wa JK kipindi hicho, sasa tukishindwa kujua ubaya na uzuri wa serikali ya awamu, ndio tutashinda kujua mwelekeo wa nchi.

Tunajifunza na Historia, watu wakae waone wapi tumekwenda mkombo, ili turukebishe mwenendo wa Jahazi la maendeleo.

Ni kama assessments za mitihani kabla ya kupewa tashhada, unajua wapi uzuri wako na ubaya wako, ni wepesi kama huo, lakini sio kusifu, kumtakatisha, na kumpembeja kiongozi hali ya kuwa mengi maouvu, na mabaya kuliko hayo mazuri.

zidumu fikra za maendeleo - JK.

Anonymous said...

We unapenda kujibishana mimi sijajibu hoja zako nimetoa opinion yangu ninavyo muona Mwalimu na nimekuambia kwa assessment yangu namuona kafanya kazi vizuri, na kama kuna mabaya tuyarekebishe au hukuelewa? sasa hayo ya mambo ya hoja hujibiwa kwa hoja yanatoka wapi mimi sijibu hoja zako na wala siko huko kwenye historia
Jembe

Anonymous said...

Nimesahau kukupa mfano ili uelewe muelekeo wangu, Azimio la Arusha ni mambo ambayo ume yainisha kuwa ni mabaya lakini sasa hivi nchi yetu haiongozwi kwa misingi ya Azimio la Arusha, kwa maana nyingine tumeshalifuta kwa hiyo hilo lilikuwa jambo baya na tumeliacha na kama kuna zuri tuendeleze ndicho ninachosema sibishii hoja zako ndugu, Karne hii siwezi kukaa na kubishana na mtu mambo ya Mwalimu nayosoma tu mema nayabeba mabaya nayaacha, mtu mwenyewe kwanza keshakufa ( Mola amuweke Mahali pema Peponi, Amina)
Jembe