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When Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan took office in March, she vowed a U-turn in politics from her predecessor, the late John Magufuli. But the arrest of opposition leader Freeman Mbowe in July has dimmed hopes that Hassan will her turn back on Magufuli's iron-fisted style of rule.
On this day, Neema Mwakipesile got a chance to read her favorite book, after spending 15 days in police custody. She was accused of organizing a protest to demand the release of opposition party leader Freeman Mbowe. Mwakipesile says the police feared her as though she were a terrorist or had done something wrong. They also would not allow her to meet with lawyers or members of her family. Freeman Mbowe, the leader of the Chadema Party, was arrested last month in the port city of Mwanza, where he was to address a meeting to discuss constitutional reforms.
In a court appearance, prosecutors accused Mbowe of taking part in conspiracies to blow up fueling stations and fund terrorist acts. The Chadema Party denies the charges and claims the arrest aims to weaken the opposition party and its call for a new constitution. Gerva Lyenda, a Chadema Party spokesperson, says that party members firmly believe that the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi Party continues to remain in power because of the weakness of the current constitution. "The Chadema Party's first demand is a new constitution," Lyenda said.
In an interview with the BBC last week, President Samia Hassan denied her government was targeting the opposition, and instead accused it of wrongdoing. Hassan said that every party is free to have its own constitution, timetable and delegates. What is not good, she added, is to demand the freedom to do political violence.
Both Mbowe and Chadema have denied all government accusations of backing terrorism or fomenting violence. Victor Kweka, an analyst, says it appears there is no level playing field for politics in Tanzania. Kweka said that such events paint a picture of unbalanced politics that rely on the ruling party and not a democracy that allows opposition parties to perform their activities, participate in political meetings and hold rallies as other countries are doing.
Meanwhile, Neema Mwakipesile says she is still experiencing trauma from her 15 days behind bars. She says despite the challenges, pro-democracy activists will continue their push for their goal. (VOA/RN)
Keywords: Tanzania, Democracy, Opposition
Keywords: Tenali Raman, Vijayanagar empire, Krishnadevaraya, Jester, Wisdom
Here are some of the versions of Ramayana!
Dasaratha Jakarta: The Buddhist Version
Paumachariya: The Jaina Version
Gond Ramayani: The Gond Version
Ramakien: The Thai Version
Hijras worship the Hindu goddess of chastity and fertility, Bahuchara Mata.homegrown.co.in
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If the whole hijra community was looked upon with enamor and respect in our history, what happened that when we come across the community we look at them with contempt and are filled with a mixture of negative, fear, laughter, and odd emotions. It's owing to the fact that under British Raj, the Criminal tribes Act 1871 hijras were criminalized and the law was made to eradicate the whole community. However, these acts were abolished by the Indian government after independence, and by 2014, India, Nepal, and Bangladesh all had officially recognized third gender people as citizens deserving of equal rights where the third gender means individuals categorizing themselves as neither male nor female. Even though the progress is slow but in 2015 Madhu Kinnar became the first hijra mayor in India was elected in the city of Raigarh.
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