Zanzibar in re-election preparations amid opposition protest

Ambassador Ali Idd, Zanzibar Second Vice President

Ambassador Ali Idd, Zanzibar Second Vice President

In a surprising and unprecedented move, the Government in Zanzibar announced it was preparing for re-elections amid ongoing talks on the political impasse and intensive resistance from the main opposition party—CUF.

Zanzibar’s Second Vice President Ambassador Seif Ali Idd told reporters that the government had made headway in preparations for the presidential, parliamentarian and councillorship polls following the nullification of the October 25 elections by the Zanzibar Electoral Commission chairman Jecha Salim Jech.

According to Seif Ali Idd , CCM Presidential Candidate and incumbent president Dr. Mohammed Ali Shein and some other opposition parties had agreed to a re-election.

“The Union President Dr. John Magufuli has also appealed to both parties to conclude the matter but insisted that going for re-election was the best option to resolve the political crisis,” he told reporters.

Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad, CUF Presidential Candidate has repeatedly vowed not to run in the re-election urging his rival Chama Cha Mapinduzi party to admit defeat in the nullified polls.

Since the nullification of the election results, America’s Millennium Challenge Compact (MCC) board of directors has withheld $ 473m grant that Tanzania has been receiving.

Should the government and Zanzibar Electoral Commission embark on re-election, over $3.3m will be required to finance the process.

Already the Civic United Front—CUF has announced it will boycott this year’s 54th revolution anniversary for the Isles, annually marked on January 12.