Tanzania: preparations underway to swear in President-elect Magufuli

President Kikwete (L) campaigning with John Magufuli earlier this month

President Kikwete (L) campaigning with John Magufuli earlier this month

One week after the general election, Tanzanian newly elected members of the National Assembly are due arrive in the country’s political capital, Dodoma to take the oath office, elect the new speaker, deputy speaker and approve President-elect John Magufuli’s choice for Prime Minister.

All political parties have been notified by Acting Clerk of Parliament John Joel, to submit nominees for Speaker, either among the newly elected members of parliament or from the general public but with approval from the National Electoral Commission (NEC).

Addressing the media Sunday in Dar es Salaam, Joel said everything is progressing according to plan and that “all we are waiting for is the president-elect to summon members of the eleventh parliament.“

President elect-Magufuli is slated to be inaugurated Thursday November 5, he was officially announced winner of the October 25 general election with more than 58% of the vote defeating his chief rival Edward Lowassa of Chadema and UKAWA opposition alliance.

Lowassa and the opposition have rejected the results of the election citing massive fraud and vote rigging, and police crackdown on opposition election monitoring staff.

Last Sunday’s election has been billed the most competitive in the country’s political history as opposition members picked up more than 60 seats in the national assembly.

Magufuli, 52, until his election as president had been serving as Minister of Works, he replaces the two term outgoing president Jakaya Kikwete, who had been in office since 2005.