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The East African : Oct 31st 2015
4 CHANGE IN DAR The EastAfrican NEWS OCTOBER 31 - NOVEMBER 6, 2015 Lowassa’s defeat may spell doom fo≥ opposition coalition By ERICK KABENDERA The EastAfrican The Chama cha Mapinduzi’s election victory has raised questions about the future of the main opposition party whose fortunes in the parliamentary elections were greatly boosted by the defection of former prime minister Edward Lowassa. Umoja wa Katiba ya CCM supporters at the party’s final rally in Dar es Salaam. Picture: File CCM maintains grip on Dar politics in hotly contested poll The Independence pa≥ty won the p≥esidency and majo≥ity seats in pa≥liament A JOINT REPORT The East African end of the week after Dr John Pombe Magufuli was declared president-elect, winning 58.46 per cent of a hotly contested vote. According to final results L announced by the National Electoral Commission, Dr Magufuli, the candidate of the ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi, collected 8,882,935 votes in an election that registered a lower-than-expected turnout of 67 per cent. His win means that in Samia Suluhu Hassan, his running mate, Tanzania has also elected its first-ever female vice president. The 55year-old native of Zanzibar is a former MP and state minister in the presidency. The president-elect will be sworn in on November 5. Dr Magafuli’s closest chal- lenger Edward Lowassa of Chadema, garnered 39.97 per cent of the votes but declined to sign the consent forms following earlier claims of fraud and calls for a recount of the tightly contested election. The polling was largely peaceful, defying earlier predictions of possible violence. Mr Lowassa rejected ife in Tanzania was returning to normal at the the results announced by the NEC and said they did not tally with what had been announced at the polling stations. The opposition candidate had earlier called for a recount of the votes and condemned the state for raids on Chadema’s independent tally centres on Sunday night that left three opposition officials in police custody. In a public statement, Mr Lowassa said his party tally showed he had won the election with 10.2 million votes, or 62 per cent, and called on the NEC to declare him the winner. Under Tanzanian law, disputes arising out of presidential elections are heard by the NEC and not the courts. The integrity of the exer- cise was thrown into question after the Zanzibar Electoral Commission annulled presidential and parliamentary elections on the Islands over allegations of fraud. The annulment came af- ter the candidate of the opposition Civic United Front, Seif Sharif Hamad, declared himself the winner of the presidential election on the islands, ahead of incumbent Dr Ali Mohamed Shein of CCM, which has governed Zanzibar since the Tangan- yika African National Union merged with the Afro-Shirazi party that led the revolution on the Island. In a joint statement, for- eign election observers, who had all praised the peaceful nature of election day, expressed concern about the annulment of the Zanzibar results and called for a speedy resolution of the stalemate. The annulment by Zan- zibar Electoral Commission chairperson Jecha Salum Jecha followed dramatic scenes on Tuesday night when soldiers surrounded the hotel where the vote tallying was being conducted and ejected journalists and election observers. The holder of a PhD in chemistry, Dr Magufuli was a Cabinet minister in charge of public works in the second term of President Kikwete’s administration from 2010 but was a surprise CCM choice for the presidential candidature. He emerged as a compromise candidate after President Kikwete refused to back Mr Lowassa, his erstwhile ally and former prime minister who was forced to resign in 2008 at the height of a major corruption scandal. After defecting to the op- position, Mr Lowassa was expected to give the upstart CCM candidate a stiff challenge but in the end Dr Magufuli held his own. In an election that was in part a referendum on the Kikwete decade in power and a ruling RESULTS Mr Magufuli, the candidate of the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi party, collected 8,882,935 votes in an election that registered a lower-thanexpected turnout of 67 per cent. In a public statement, Mr Lowassa said his party tally showed he had won the election with 10.2 million votes, or 62 per cent, and called on NEC to declare him the winner. party many see as old and in need of reform, the president-elect ran mostly on his personal attributes of being an honest, hard worker and only made references to CCM sparingly. Party insiders say they were unhappy with what they term as “increasingly negative media coverage” in which they were negatively portrayed as losing. Apart from establishing a 32-strong member team of CCM cadres to oversee the campaign process, multiple sources within CCM have confirmed that the party made a decision to establish an independent corporate-style campaign. It brought together “most of the brightest young people in the country from the private sector from research, to marketing, communications and advertising.” Wananchi (Ukawa) was formed by individuals and institutions, among them civil society organisations and political parties, which were pushing for enactment of a new constitution. Formed as a social move- ment to rally Tanzanians to push for a review of the constitution, Ukawa metamorphosed into an opposition entity that gave CCM a run for its money in the just concluded elections. Affiliates included four political parties — Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema), Civic United Front (CUF), National League for Democracy (NLD) and National Convention for Construction and Reforms (NCCRMageuzi) — that agreed to field joint candidates to contest civic election and parliamentary seats and presidency. However, disagreements emerged in some constituencies, opening doors for some parties in the movement to field candidates. In Segerea constituency, for example, Chadema and CUF fielded seperate candidates and lost to CCM. Some parties could have lost their identities to the movement’s campaigns led by Mr Lowassa, who was fronted by Chadema. CUF is likely to become the main opposition party depending on the number of seats it wins in Zanzibar after the nullified election is repeated in January next year. While CCM has won 160 (74 per cent) constituencies and the opposition block bagged 46 (21 per cent) constituencies, the number is likely to increase when elections are held in seven constituencies on the mainland that couldn’t vote during the election. In the 2010 election, Chadema won 23 seats, CUF 24 seats and CCM 186 seats. However, questions are being raised whether the opposition coalition will finally seek registration to become a formal political entity. In 1995, some political parties including NCCR-Mageuzi and Chadema formed Umoja wa Demokrasia Tanzania (Udeta) to oust CCM from power. The new outfit received a major boost when then deputy prime minister and minister for labour Augustine Mrema joined it from CCM. NCCR-Mageuzi decided to go it alone for the presidency hoping to benefit from Mr Mrema’s popularity but lost to CCM’s Benjamin Mkapa. Under the stewardship of Dr Willbroad Slaa, who ditched Chadema to protest to the coming of Mr Lowassa, the party had won accolades as an anti-corruption force after it released the infamous List of Shame, which contained names of senior politicians in the government, including Mr Lowassa, who were linked to grand corruption. The defection of Dr Slaa is said to have affected voting patterns in opposition strongholds. Sources in the party said internal polls showed that at least 20 per cent of supporters said they will not vote. Made it difficult Analysts contend that Chadema’s decision to nominate Mr Lowassa as its presidential candidate after his defection from CCM could have made it difficult for the opposition to ride on the anti-corruption wave. Chadema’s decision to nominate Mr Lowassa had prompted some key members and MPs, among them Tundu Lissu and John Mnyika, to consider leaving the party, but sources indicated that party elders and founder Edwin Mtei pleaded with them to stay. The ACT–Wazalendo par- ty, which was targeting to garner at least 10 per cent of the votes so that it could qualify for the subsidy and special seats MPs, only got 0.63 per cent of the total vote cast and its biggest challenge could be raising resources to build a national political party.
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