“Thou shalt not pitcher to kill rats” – The political games have kicked off

Updated June 2nd, 3rd, 4th – see below

I spotted a remarkable tweet apparently from CCM Secretary for Ideology and Publicity, Nape Nnauye, earlier today:

Google Translate is rarely much good with Swahili, but this effort has a biblical flavour that makes it oddly beautiful in its failure:

“Thou shalt not pitcher to kill rats, mice bowed pay court procedures, and will remain secure and your pitcher! CCM have shainamisha pitcher, twamsubiri!”

Let me have a go instead:Nape twitter panya 010615

“Don’t break the pot in order to kill the rat, turn it over slowly to get the rat out, then kill it, and you will be left with your pot intact! As CCM we have already turned the pot over, we await the rat!”

There was another tweet previously as well, a few days ago:

“To cut off the head of a tortoise requires timing!!”

In Nape’s influential position within the party secretariat and as a member of all the party’s various committees, councils and congress that will select the CCM presidential candidate, these are big words.

But do these tweets refer to Edward Lowassa? After his reportedly huge rally in Arusha on Saturday to launch his campaign, Lowassa is clearly trying to make himself impossible to exclude from the process, but Nape is widely believed to oppose the selection of Lowassa as the party’s candidate. 

On the other hand, I saw another scarcely credible reported attack on Lowassa in various online media this morning. This claimed to be by the Minister for East African Cooperation, Harrison Mwakyembe, whose report on the Richmond energy scandal in 2009 forced Lowassa to resign as Prime Minister.

I’m not going to quote or translate for you what Mwakyembe is reported to have said over the weekend, because it is not remotely believable that he really said it. But that’s exactly the point: somebody is trying to put words into the mouth of one long-standing opponent of Lowassa.

Perhaps this tweet from an account claiming to be Nape Nnauye is another example of the same. The account (@napemnnauye) is in his name, but it is not “verified“, it is only a few weeks old, and has only posted 20 tweets. It looks suspicious, to say the least.

I may be wrong, but to me, it looks very much like someone (or some people) is putting false words into the mouths of both Nape and Mwakyembe.

Who that is, and why they’re doing it, is unclear. But what is clear is that the political games have kicked off.

UPDATE: June 2nd, 2015

Another tweet:

“Makongoro my brother, turn the pot slowly please! The rat has started to peek out, but we should use timing, this rat is street-wise!”

UPDATE: June 3rd, 2015

1. Harrison Mwakyembe was interviewed on radio (CloudsFM) earlier this morning. I didn’t hear the broadcast, but it has been reported (i) that he denied making the statements that have been attributed to him, and (ii) that he has reported those behind the statements to the police.

There are more details available here (JF) and here (ITV).

2. It seems someone has also been putting words into the mouth of the EU Embassy in Tanzania as well:

From the longer statement on Facebook:

“The EU Delegation rejects categorically the information circulating on social media alleging that the EU Ambassador has given a press conference commenting on election candidates. The EU Ambassador has given no such press conference or expressed any views on the above.”

UPDATE: June 4th, 2015

Nipashe newspaper led with this story today – “Uzushi wapamba moto“:

Nipashe fp 040615

Nipashe 4/6/2015, via millardayo.com

The headline translates roughly as “fabrications intensify”.

See also Google Translate: “Decorate fabricating fire”.

The same story was also covered in MwanaHalisi online, the only outlet that had given credence to the original quotes allegedly by Mwakyembe.