Thursday, August 25, 2011

STATE HAS REMOVED MY SECURITY DETAILS, SAYS EX-CHIEF JUSTICE




In a revelation which left many people surprised the immediate former Chief Justice, Mr Augustino Ramadhani, said yesterday that the government withdrew security details for his home only two days after he left office last year.Speaking in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Mr Justice (rtd) Ramadhani said that was contrary to regulations regarding benefits that go with the post he held since his appointment in 2007.

Speaking before the minister for Home Affairs, Mr Shamsi Vuai Nahodha, and the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr Said Mwema, the retired CJ sorrowfully revealed that the security personnel taking charge at his home were removed barely a day after his official retirement on December 28 last year.

Mr Justice Ramadhani said he was surprised a day after his retirement when he came home with a friend to find there was no security guard as usual. “By then I was not informed of any changes and I was not expecting any,” he said.“When I sought to know what had happened, one of the police officers told me that they had been ordered to stop guarding my home a day before,” he said sadly, leaving his audience in dismay.

The retired Judge was presenting a paper at the launch of celebrations to mark the 50th independence anniversary of the Kurasini Police College which go hand in hand with the 50th anniversary of Tanzania Mainland’s independence.

However, Mr Justice Ramadhani said he did not tell anyone as “no one among the concerned officials does not know the entitlements of a retired Chief Justice”. Turning to the IGP, he told him: “I want you to forgive me, first for breaking this information to you under such circumstances, if you did not know, but also for not letting you know. This is the first time I am saying this.”

He went on to say: “Being also a retired army officer together with my wife, we decided that we will take care of the security ourselves… thereafter we hired some Maasai men to be in charge of the security of our house.
“I’m not saying this so that you take anybody to task, but I want people to know what happened to a retired Chief Justice, what about the common mwananchi?” he queried.

Records show that the former CJ retired from the army with the rank of Lieutenant Colonel while this paper could not immediately identify the rank which his wife was having at the time of her retirement.

Mr Justice Ramadhani, also a former Attorney General of Zanzibar, said he later decided to hire a private company to take charge of security at his home. “I have contracted KK Security for the security of my house and I pay the company Sh400,000 a month from my own pocket,” he said.

The retired CJ was presenting a paper on the importance of abiding by the law without being forced to do so. He said he wondered what had gone wrong with the police force and the government in general since the issue of benefits was clearly stipulated in the retirement regulations.

In his presentation, he said it was important that everyone, especially the law-enforcers, to work in accordance with stipulated laws without fear or favour.“You should not be cowed because the law is not selective…you need also to be honest,” he stressed.

When The Citizen later sought to know whether he knew the reasons for the security withdrawal, he said in a phone interview that he had no idea and that he hoped the decision had no malice. “You were there and you heard what I said… the regulations are clear, you can make an analysis whether what has been done is according to the law or not… but that is the situation,” he said curtly. Mr Nahodha could not be reached later to comment on the issue as his phone was switched off while that of his deputy, Mr Hamis Kagasheki, was not picked.

When this paper called IGP Mwema, he also switched off his phone immediately after this reporter introduced himself.



THE CITIZEN

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