Hoping for a peaceful outcome of the #Tanzanian elections on Sunday 25 October.
On 4 November 2015, 14.00 – 15.45 I will take part in a presentation on Danish Institute for International Studies about the outcomes - invitation here, open for all.
I'll say something about the use of social media during the elections. I will probably include this photo among the many samples of how Tanzanians have expressed their partisanship, and identity. And how I believe parts of the collective unconsciousness have turned almost tangible.
The photo has circulated on Whatsapp, it depicts a CCM supporter dressed in a diaper, which supposedly is a reference to the opposing party's presidential candidate, Lowassa - a rumor went he suffered from diarrhea during one rally.
Visualisations of rumors have been extraordinarily creative this elections. They have surely also been painful to some. The literal translation of the text on the sign in photo, goes like this:
'WE ARE NOT DECEIVED, OLD MAN KINGUNGE
YOU CUT YOUR TEETH (GREW) WHEN YOU WERE) IN CCM
YOU BECAME A TOOTHLESS PERSON/PERSON WITH FEW TEETH (WHEN YOU WERE) IN CCM
TODAY (SURPRISINGLY) YOU ARE TELLING US (PREACHING) ABOUT CHANGES
DO YOU WANT TO (REPEAT/REVISE) RETURN TO CHILDHOOD?'
Another layer of the meaning of this messaage may be that CCM here means your family, your home - the place where you were brought up and looked after. Leaving your family, your most safe place at a time like this, is a sign of disloyalty. Meaning only a confused person will turn his back to his family.