Magufuli Re-elected Tanzanian President Amidst Arrests, Intimidation

Magufuli Re-elected Tanzanian President Amidst Arrests, Intimidation

 

By Kwame Ismail Nkurunziza

 

Tanzanian president John Pombe Magufuli has been re-elected  for a second five-year term in office.

Magufuli got 12.5 million votes more than ten million votes that his main challenger Tundu Lissu of Chadema party, who got 1.9 million votes or 13% according to the National Electoral Commission.

However, foreign observers said the election was marred by arrests of protesters and allegations of fake ballots.

The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) also won 253 seats out of 261 constituencies which had been announced by time of press.

But Lissu has rejected the results and called  for peaceful demonstrations.

The opposition alleges that thousands of observers were turned away from polling stations on Wednesday, which led to what Lisu and group called widespread irregularities.

Semistocles Kaijage, the Electoral Commission boss, insisted however that all votes were legitimate.

Tanzanian NGO Election Watch, a group of regional experts,  said in a statement that the heavy deployment of police and military  created a climate of fear amongst the voters.

“The election process, so far falls way below the acceptable international standards for holding a free and fair election,” said Election Watch.

There is a fear that postelection violence might erupt in a country that is known for its democratic ideals.

 

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