The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi Tuesday unveiled a new Central Committee, with President Jakaya Kikwete hailing the 14 members as a winning squad.
Addressing CCM supporters at the party headquarters in Dodoma, Mr Kikwete said he has confidence in the new CC members, given their “undisputed” professionalism and experience. He told the CC, the highest decision-making body in CCM, to work hard for the benefit of the party.
The President declared: “This is not about enriching your CVs. It is about making sure that the party remains strong…it is because of my faith in you that you were elected into the CC out of more than 370 NEC members who qualify.”
Addressing reporters early Tuesday after the election held close to midnight on Monday, CCM publicity secretary Nape Nnauye said the National Executive Committee picked the 14 from a list of 41 names provided by Mr Kikwete, who is the party chairman.
The 14 include Cabinet ministers William Lukuvi, Stephen Wassira, Emmanuel Nchimbi and Anna Tibaijuka.
The rest of the team comprises Pindi Chana, Jerry Silaa, Adam Kimbisa, Shamsi Vuai Nahodha, Hussein Mwinyi, Maua Daftari, Samia Suluhu, Salim Ahmed Salim, Khadija Aboud and Makame Mbarawa.
New faces in the NEC include former Africa Union Secretary-General Salim, Lands, Housing and Human Settlements Development Minister Tibaijuka, Home Affairs Minister Nchimbi, Ilala Mayor Slaa, former Dar es Salaam mayor Kimbisa and Ms Aboud.
According to Mr Nnauye, President Kikwete not only nominated Dr Salim to the NEC but also put him up for possible appointment to the CC—which the party constitution allows.
CCM’s Central Committee comprises 28 members, 14 of them elected by NEC and another 14 qualifying by virtue of their position in the party.
Those who automatically qualify are President Kikwete and his deputies, Zanzibar President Ali Mohammed Shein and Mr Philip Mangula.
Also on the list are Prime Minister Mizengo Pinda, Zanzibar’s second Vice President Seif Ali Iddi, Speaker of the National Assembly Anne Makinda and her Zanzibar counterpart Mr Pandu Kificho.
CCM deputy secretary-generals from both parts of the Union—Mr Mwigulu Nchemba and Mr Vuai Ali Vuai—are also members.
The list also includes six members of the CCM secretariat—Mr Nnauye, Mr Mohamed Seif Khatibu (Organisation), Ms Zakia Meghji (Finance and Economy) and Dr Asha-Rose Migiro (Politics and Foreign Relations).
Others who qualify for the posts are the chair of the CCM Women’s Wing, Ms Sophia Simba, and the Youth Wing Chairperson, Mr Sadipha Abdallah. The list is completed by the Secretary of CCM legislators, Ms Jenister Mhagama, and her Zanzibar counterpart.
Speaking to The Citizen, our sister publication, some of new CCM members expressed their joy at joining the CC.
Prof Tibaijuka said she would use her experience to serve the party and country. “When I left the UN, I came back to serve my country,” she said. “Now that I am elected into the NEC, I will make sure that the decisions that the party makes are in the public interest.”
One of the challenges that CC faces, according to Prof Tibaijuka, is making sure that the government manages to handle social pressure.
Mr Silaa said his main responsibility as a CC member will be to help the party’s chairperson. “As you heard from the chairman, we aren’t supposed to take this appointment as a political rank but we should work in the party’s interest,” he added.
Ms Chana said she was elated by the appointment and declared that she was ready for work.
The new CC has tenure of five years, as per the CCM constitution.
In another development, President Kikwete received two new members who defected from Chadema. They are the former Chadema youth wing vice chairperson, Ms Juliana Shonza, and Mr Mtera Mwampamba.