Dar es Salaam — Tanzania's ruling party Chama cha Mapinduzi's (CCM) Secretary-General, Bashiru Ally has today told the party's stalwarts in Pemba that the era of the Isle being opposition stronghold is over.
He said he was not willing to see his party lose seats to the opposition in 2020.
Bashiru is on a three-day working tour of Pemba, the first since his appointment, in an attempt to galvanise support for the party whose following in the isle remains low that it has never been successful in winning a single seat since the re-introduction of the multi-party politics in the country.
The only time that CCM won some seats in Pemba was in 2015 and that was only possible after the opposition boycotted the a rerun of election for posts within the Revolutionary Government of Zanzibar.
As expected after boycott, the ruling party won all the seats for members of the House of Representatives and councillors, the first win since 1995.
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However, the opposition retained all seats for Members of Parliament because the election for Union Government legislative positions and that of the President were not annulled.
But in an interesting note, Dr Bashiru today told a public rally at Michewani District in the Northern Region of Pemba that he would not like to be told that the party has lost in the coming elections.
"I would not like to hear that we have lost the constituencies to opposition anymore for doing so is against our constitution," he said.
Bashiru was silent on the strategies his party will use to make sure this mission is accomplished though, apart from saying that it is the role of every party cadre to build the party as well as making sure that it wins and its victory is protected in any way possible.
Reacting to Bashiru's statement, ACT -Wazalendo deputy party leader Mr Duni Haji called the former University of Dar es Salaam don'ds statement self-gratifying, urging him to tell that statement to CCM's cadres in the party's mini office in Lumumba, Dar es Salaam and not Pemba.
"Unless he means doing so through the military means... But if he means doing so through a ballot box, I think he's just lying to himself and such a thing can't happen," said Mr Duni who was the running mate of the Ukawa coalition candidate in the 2015 General Election.
CUF party's director of protocol and communications Mr Abdul Kambaya called Bashiru's statement a continuation of the "undemocratic" statements that the latter has been uttering lately, casting doubts on what exactly CCM has in store as the nation approaches the 2020 General Election.
He said he is disappointed with the transformation that he claimed Bashiru has gone through, saying he has moved from someone who thinks before saying to someone who says anything for politics' sake.
"He has now become politician, issuing controversial and sometimes very undemocratic statements, just to appeal to his party's followers as well as his appointing authority. But in any case, his are just empty words and the truth will be known in 2020," said Mr Kambaya.