The police and CCM leaders have interrogated ward councillors and human rights activists living in Ngorongoro for allegedly inciting the Maasai to defy the government’s proposal of voluntarily vacating the area.
Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition (THRDC) Deputy Coordinator Mr Leopold Mosha, groups of human rights activists, and ward councillors of Sale ward and Loliondo are being hunted by the police for interrogation on the same allegations.
Mr Mosha’s report reveals that Mr Joel Clemenence, a Malambo ward councillor, and Arash ward councillor Mr Mathew Siloma were summoned by CCM’s ethics committee in the Ngorongoro district to answer claims upon them for inciting people to defy the government’s relocation proposal.
Mr Mosha reports that the police have been hunting down workers of human rights organisations working in Ngorongoro, and others have already been interrogated in Arusha town.
Those questioned by the police have testified that they have found themselves in trouble with the police by words they have uttered during several meetings with the Maasai community. For instance, “The government will neither take nor land nor our lives”. These are words said by Mr Joel Clemence, Malambo ward councillor.
“We are not leaving to anywhere, and we will get rid of all beacons when they place them on our land”, – added Mr Clemence.
Mr Clemence said their order to be questioned descended from the CCM secretary in the Arusha district, Mr Mussa Matoroka. Mr Clemence then added that his fellow councillor of Siloma ward is still under police custody in Arusha town.
“Our friend is still held in custody, they came for me yesterday, but they couldn’t find me”, – said Clemence.