ZANZIBAR presidential candidate on CCM ticket Dr Hussein Ali Mwinyi yesterday promised legal reforms to defend the interest of divorcees, if elected the eighth president of Zanzibar.
He pledged to compel the House of Representatives to enact the legislation that will squeeze husbands ditching their families due to marital disagreements.
Speaking to an association of Pemba divorcees at the former house of representative hall in Wete, Pemba, Dr Mwinyi said: “If God wishes for me to become the president of Zanzibar, I will spearhead the enactment of strict Act to enable divorcees to get their rights.”
The presidential hopeful said he is aware of the serious challenges that haunt widows and divorcees, most of whom have been robbed of their rights.
“I will be in the forefront to ensure that torture and humiliation against you cease,” he vowed.
Dr Mwinyi said he was quite aware of groups of suffering divorced women in Zanzibar due to refusal by their husbands to provide them with upkeep.
“Thanks for this association that you have established...it will be easier for me to support you if Zanzibaris endorse me for the presidency,” Dr Mwinyi told the cheerful ladies.
He pledged to stand for the ill-fated women, "...your divorce or death of your husband should never be a justification for your suffering...should I assume power, I will ensure that widows and divorcees enjoy their rights."
Besides supporting them legally, the presidential hopeful also promised to provide them with credit facilities to elevate them, economically.
“Economic empowerment of Zanzibar widows and divorcees will help their families to live peacefully,” said Dr Mwinyi, reminding that all the promises will materialise only if Zanzibaris vote the ruling CCM into power in the October 28, 2020 general elections.
Meanwhile, Dr Mwinyi has approved the association's plea to have the prospective first lady—Maryam Mwinyi—as its matron.
The association Chairlady Tabia Makame decried a myriad of challenges facing widows and divorcees, citing lack of credit facilities as the most daunting.
"We seem valueless in the society due to our marital status, our hopes now are on you ...hopefully you will emerge victorious in the October elections, please we bank on you," Ms Makame said.
The Chairperson of the association's board of trustees, Ms Mgeni Hassan Juma assured Dr Mwinyi of all the votes of Zanzibar divorcees whom she said have great hopes on the presidency seeker.
Earlier, Dr Mwinyi had met Sheikhs and teachers in Wete district and promised to put in place a special programme to intensify Quran learning.