Tanzania annuls Zanzibar vote over ‘violations’
Elections on Tanzania’s semi-autonomous archipelago of Zanzibar have been annulled for not being free and fair, the chairman of the islands’ electoral commission has said.
Jecha Salum Jecha said youths had invaded polling stations, votes had been tampered with and electoral commissioners had exchanged blows.
The majority of the criticism were levelled at the vote on Pemba Island.
Zanzibaris voted in local and national elections on Sunday.
The elections in Tanzania are the most competitive in the country’s history, with four opposition parties forming the Ukawa coalition.
Ukawa’s national presidential candidate Edward Lowassa said discrepancies in Zanzibar’s local elections could be mirrored in the national vote.
Earlier, he called for the electoral commission to stop releasing results, alleging the whole process nationwide had been marred by fraud.
He urged his supporters to remain calm and not to take to the streets and protest.
Previous elections have turned violent on Zanzibar, which is made up of the islands of Unguja and Pemba and is popular with tourists.
In his statement, Mr Jecha accused Zanzibari commissioners of partisan.
On Monday, Ukawa candidate Seif Sharif Hamad had declared himself the winner of the Zanzibari presidential poll.
It is unclear if and when new elections for the president and parliament of the archipelago will be held, he says. electoral
Zanzibar maintains a political union with Tanzania, but has its own parliament and president