2005 Presidential election results
|Candidate||Party||% of vote|
|Jakaya Kikwete||Chama Cha Mapinduzi||80,28%|
|Ibrahim Lipumba||Civic United Front||11,68%|
|Freeman Mbowe||Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendelo||5,88%|
|Augustine Mrema||Tanzania Labour Party||0,75%|
|Sengondo Mvungi||National Convention for Construction and Reform - Mageuzi||0,49%|
|Christopher Mtikila||Democratic Party||0,27%|
|Emmanuel Makaidi||National League for Democracy||0,19%|
|Anna Senkoro||Progressive Party of Tanzania - Maendeleo||0,17%|
|Leonard Shayo||Demokrasia Makini||0,15%|
|Paul Henry Kyara||Sauti ya Umma||0,14%|
2005 Parliamentary election results
|Party||% of votes||Direct seats||Additional women’s seats||Total seats|
|Chama Cha Mapinduzi||70,0%||206||58||264|
|Civic United Front||14,3%||19||11||30|
|Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo||8,2%||5||6||11|
|Tanzania Labour Party||2,7%||1||0||1|
|National Convention for Construction and Reform - Mageuzi||2,2%||0||0||0|
|Members nominated by the President||10|
|Representatives of the Zanzibar House of Representatives||5|
|Ex officio member||2|
Boasting relative political stability, the Republic of Tanzania will conduct general elections on October 31, 2010. Contemporary Tanzanian politics is characterised by one-party rule under the leadership of three Presidents since achieving independence and autonomy in 1961. Despite the political stability and social harmony in the country, Tanzania has chronic economic problems with regard to debt and market-related ailments. Although the ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), is likely to maintain its overall Parliamentary majority, and retain its Presidential candidate and incumbent President Jakaya Kikwete in power, the country has a number of socioeconomic challenges that require urgent attention and will be the primary focus prior to the upcoming election.
Previously a German colony, Tanganyika, as it was known, became a territory of the UK under a League of Nations mandate following the end of World War I. Following World War II, the status of Tanganyika changed to that of a United Nations trust territory under British control. In the ensuing period, Tanganyika took gradual steps towards independence and self-government.
The move towards independence coincided with the emergence of Julius Nyerere and his political party, known as the Tanganyika African National Union (Tanu). Tanu candidates achieved success in the 1958 and 1959 Legislative Council elections. With the initial success of the indigenous party, the UK decided to grant Tanganyika self-governance following general elections in 1960. Nyerere subsequently became Chief Minister in the new government.
In May 1961, Tanganyika officially became autonomous with Nyerere as Prime Minister under a new constitution. Full independence, however, was only officially achieved on December 9, 1961, when Tanganyika became a Republic within the British Commonwealth, with Nyerere as the first President.
United Republic of Tanzania
The United Republic of Tanzania was a term coined in April 1964, and symbolised the union between Tanganyika and the island of Zanzibar. The partnership between the two territories was fully established with the merging of Tanu and the ruling party of Zanzibar, the Afro-Shirazi Party, to form the CCM. A new constitution, drafted the same year, ratified the union between the two parties, which meant that the CCM had the sole legal right of directing the population on all significant political and economic activities.
Julius Nyerere and his policies
Nyerere's rule can be defined as successful in terms of asserting a strong Tanzanian national identity that transcends culture and linguistic differences within the country. These social policies are credited for Tanzania's political stability.
Economically, however, Nyerere was not as successful - his policies were seen as backward in that they failed to embrace modern market conditions and alienated the country from the global trading system. Nyerere failed to encourage economic conditions that would attract investment. Subsequently, there was a great deal of State interference. Today, Tanzania is still trying to recover from Nyerere's economic legacy that has left the country with a crippling infrastructure and a burgeoning debt crisis.
Nyerere stepped down as Tanzanian President in 1985, and was succeeded by Ali Hassan Mwinyi. Nyerere, however, retained his position of chairperson of the CCM for a further five years. Nyerere remained influential in Tanzanian politics until his death in 1999.
The current President, Kikwete, was elected in the 2005 general elections, which were widely described as being free and fair.
Tanzania's President is elected by direct popular vote for a five-year term. The President appoints the Prime Minister, who serves as the government's leader in the National Assembly. The President selects his Cabinet from members of the National Assembly, and is empowered by the constitution to nominate ten nonelected Members of Parliament to be eligible to become members of Cabinet.
The National Assembly is unicameral and has up to 325 members. The Parliamentary make-up is as follows: an Attorney General, the Parliamentary Speaker, five members elected from the Zanzibar House of Representatives, 75 special women's seats are divided up between the political parties according to their proportion of the vote, 231 constituent seats, which include 50 from Zanzibar, and up to ten seats nominated by the President.
According to the Union Agreement, Zanzibar has a certain amount of autonomy within the Republic of Tanzania. The island has its own President and Legislature that presides over all non-Union matters, while the Tanzanian National Assembly presides over matters associated with the Union. The Constitution guarantees that 20% of the seats within the National Assembly are reserved for Zanzibari members.
Although single-party rule technically came to an end in 1992, Tanzanian politics continues to be dominated by the ruling CCM party. Kikwete received over 80% of the Presidential vote in 2005, while the party secured an absolute Parliamentary majority with 264 seats. This means that the mainland opposition holds only six elected seats.
The CCM will be aiming to retain its political dominance over the East African country. The opposition, however, will be looking to break the stranglhold that the ruling party has over the National Assembly.
According to the National Electoral Commission, seven candidates will take part in the upcoming poll. These include the incumbent Kikwete from the CCM, Willibrod Slaa of the main opposition party the Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendelo and Ibrahim Lipumba of the Civic United Front.
The main issues around which campaigning is centred are socioeconomic in nature and include problems associated with health and education.
One of the country's major concerns is that of economic development. Despite efforts to restructure the economy in a way that minimises State intervention and parastatal domination, Tanzania has struggled to attract the foreign investment earmarked to uplift the country's economic infrastructure.
Since Nyerere left office, there have been considerable efforts to liberalise the economy to create favourable market conditions. These changes, however, have failed to attract foreign companies and have not created an attractive investment climate despite Tanzania's political stability. Implementing investment-friendly policies will not be the only major challenge for the incoming regime, also important is ensuring that the benefits derived from this investment trickle down to the poor. Poverty alleviation, therefore, remains a priority for the Tanzanian government.
The stable political culture in Tanzania should mean that the Tanzanian general election should be free and fair, as well as void of violence. The CCM is likely to retain their dominance over the country, with its candidate, Kikwete, almost guaranteed to be elected to preside for a second term.
AllAfrica. Tanzania: seven candidates to contest Presidency. (October 14, 2010).
AllAfrica. Tanzania: election 2010 - where are these four Presidential candidates? (August 30, 2010).
US Department of State. Background note: Tanzania. (October 18, 2010).
IFES. Election Guide. Country profile: Tanzania. (October 4, 2010).
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