Dar es-Salaam. — With just a little over three weeks before Tanzania’s presidential polls set for 28 October, incumbent President John Magufuli is busy criss-crossing the country, while an opposition candidate is suspended from the race.
Tanzania’s electoral commission suspended opposition candidate Tundu Lissu’s presidential campaigns on 2 October, as punishment for alleged ethics violations following remarks he made while on the campaign trail.
The electoral commission’s ethics body said it had received complaints from two political parties, one being the ruling party CCM, about remarks Lissu had made saying President Magufuli had met election officials in the capital.
After the news became public, Lissu called the decision “rough justice”, and said it was “yet another proof of a discredited and a compromised electoral system.”
The decision means that Lissu, who had initially said he would continue his campaigns anyway, cannot campaign until the 7-day suspension lapses.
“Hon Tundu Lissu will engage in social activities in his capacity as the vice chair of the party,” Mbowe said at a press conference on Sunday.
Lissu’s party Chadema said that it would obey the suspension, but its chairman Freeman Mbowe said it would file a suit in court “for the records.”
The suspension is the latest in a series of hurdles facing the country’s opposition, which has had to navigate a hostile political environment since Magufuli was first elected in 2015. In June, Mbowe was attacked in the capital after Lissu announced his candidature. — Africa Report.