Zanzibar — Citing violations of human rights and the on-going 'unnecessary' tension in Zanzibar, the Tanzania Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (TCHRG), has condemned the situation in the Isles, urging authorities to immediately address it.
"The situation in Zanzibar is an indication of lack of good governance and accountability and rule of law. The commission advises the government to make sure that such incidents never reappear," reads a press release from the commission.
The TCHRG statement signed by its Zanzibar's Commissioner, Mr Zahor Khamis also condemned the murder of a police officer, destruction of public and private property and the 'controversial kidnapping' of the famous Muslim cleric Sheikh Farid Hadi Ahmed.
The violence and tension in Zanzibar, particularly on Unguja Island follows reports on October 16, this year that Farid, the vocal cleric from the Uamsho Muslim group, had been abducted by armed masked men who identified themselves as police officers.
Zanzibar Commissioner of Police, Mr Mussa Ali has categorically denied allegations that police officers were involved in abducting the Muslim leader. However, the Human Rights Commission has joined the State Minister, Mr Mohammed Aboud Mohammed to call for an inquiry.
"Although the abduction claims are unclear, we urge thorough investigations to find the truth and also hunt for criminals behind the murder of the policeman, injuring people and destroying property," Zahor said in the press release. The Second Vice-President Ambassador Seif Ali Iddi, said the government will leave no stone unturned in search for the culprits and make sure that peace and stability is maintained.
Meanwhile, the police in Zanzibar have also denied reports that police have launched nation-wide campaign to pull-down Uamsho flags. Eyewitnesses say that armed police officers have been involved in pulling down the flags in different places such as Mwembe-Makumbi, Jang'ombe and Kinyasini, where some people retaliated by pulling-down political parties flags.
It is also alleged that as the police pulled down Uamsho flags, they also beat up people. Hundreds of police and armed Zanzibar security units (KMKM, JKU and MAFUNZO), were deployed in several parts of Zanzibar town in an effort to maintain peace and stability in the islands.