Southern African News Features                                           SANF 10 No 41, Oct 2010
Tanzania ready for elections

Seven presidential candidates will take part in the October general elections in the United Republic of Tanzania, the National Electoral Commission (NEC) has said.

These include incumbent President Jakaya Kikwete, who is running for a second term. He is representing the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party, which has been in power since independence in 1961.

Other candidates include Willibrod Slaa and Ibrahim Lipumba of the main opposition parties, the Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendelo (CHADEMA) and the Civic United Front (CUF) respectively.

More than 18 political parties are expected to take part in the elections that would see new members of parliament being elected for the next five years.

The Tanzanian parliament, the Bunge, which was increased to 323 members in 2005, is made up of 232 members that are elected while the remainder is appointed.

Under the country’s Constitution, there are 75 seats guaranteed for women, representing an additional 30 percent of the figure of elected seats.

Ten members are appointed by the Union president, and five seats are occupied by members of the Zanzibar House of Representatives. The remaining two seats are reserved for the Attorney General and the Speaker of Parliament.

The 75 women members are appointed by the National Electoral Commission drawn from lists submitted by the parties in parliament, and based on the number of votes won by the parties represented in parliament.

In the last election, CCM won 206 of the elected seats, that is almost 90 percent of the elected seats in parliament. Kikwete won the presidential election with 80.2 percent of the popular vote.

The CUF won 19 seats with the five going to CHADEMA and one each to the Tanzania Labour Party (TLP) and the United Democratic Party (UDP).

Education, health and employment are some of the main issues dominating the election campaign as Tanzanians prepare for the 31 October election.

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SANF is produced by the Southern African Research and Documentation Centre (SARDC), which has monitored regional developments since 1985

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