Drama as results from Tanzanian elections trickle in
Heavily armed police personnel patrol major roads, while others stationed themselves in strategic areas in of Dar Es Salam, the Tanzanian capital. This may not be unconnected with the rising number of youths who are mostly the supporters of the opposition Chadema Ukawa party.
Some of the youths spoken to by our reporter near Oysterbay Primary School area said they couldn’t go round as they are supporters of the opposition party and are scared of the police.
However even the members of the CMM ruling party have not been seen going round the city for fear of reprisals as this is the first general election with a strong campaign and in a multiparty setting. There are reported incidents especially in rural areas where the electorate were either unhappy with the results over alleged irregularities, among others.
The Tanzanian National Election Commission, NEC Chairman Damian Lubavu says the electoral body is not selective in announcing presidential results from constituencies. But Police use tear gas to disperse crowds in Muleba Town as residents oppose the parliamentary results announced early yesterday.
CCM’s campaign committee spokesman Mr. January Makamba said the preliminary Election results show the ruling party won 176 out of 264 constituencies in Tanzania.
Partial results from the elections show that seven government ministers have lost their parliamentary seats to the opposition Ukawa coalition, which has expressed concerns about the results announced so far.
CCM says they have so far reclaimed 11 constituencies that were taken by the Opposition in the previous elections.
Some of the observers, including the African Union, AU Commonwealth, European Union and Southern African Development Community SADC addressed the press.
The African Union Commissioner for Political Affairs Hajiya Aisha Laraba Abudullahi said the election has gone very well and observing the counting process very well. She said the voluntary union in Tanzania and has been observing an average of ten to fifteen elections each year and called on the people to ensure peace for the development of the country.
In his speech the Chairman of the Commonwealth observer group and Nigeria’s former President Goodluck Jonathan said “We were in the country on the 23 of October and they formed teams that went round the country to observe the preparations ahead of the election. “We met with electoral officials, political parties and the police at the district levels to gain a comprehensive picture of the electoral processes and environment”.
It is noted that even though the voters card was captured using biometric data, but the voting pattern was analogue as pen was used to thick the party of choice and not the use of thumbprint. While no opposition presidential candidate has the right to seek for redress in the court. However there is reported tension in the semi-autonomous nation of Zanzibar as it was reported that many people closed their shops and went home while government offices was open but some staff did not go to work for fear of violence.
Ahead of the polls, a survey by the Tanzania Education Development Research Organization (TEDRO) showed varied responses among voters in Tanzania. While some said they believed former Premier Edward Lowassa, who contested on behalf of the opposition Ukawa coalition, can fix massive unemployment and education in the country, others think John Magufuli of the ruling CCM is good enough.
When Tanzanians went to the polls in 2000, people appeared at that time more concerned about the continuing drop in their standards of living.
The CCM, being the ruling party, continued reinforced the uneven playing field between it and the opposition and won easily on the mainland.
In Zanzibar, the CCM again took power, but the elections were marred by fraud, violence, and the detention without trial of CUF supporters.
Although Tanzania prides itself on being a peaceloving nation, the problems on Zanzibar reflect the repressive nature of the current political system in the country.
Opposition Chadema Ukawa celebrating, but are scared to go round Dar Es Salam.