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Tanzania Opposition Party ACT-Wazalendo Compromises To Join Zanzibar’s Unity Government

Act Wazalendo party has agreed to be part of Zanzibar’s Government of National Unity (GNU) slightly a month after the disputed October 28 General Election in the semi-autonomous island and mainland Tanzania.

In a statement on Sunday, ACT-Wazalendo Secretary-General Ado Shaibu said the party had considered the tense situation in Zanzibar and decided to put voters’ interest first.

The committee also directed the party leadership to propose the name of a person who will assume the role of Zanzibar’s First Vice President.

Shaibu noted that 17 people were killed and at least 300 others injured as a result of political animosity and hostility during this year’s polls.

“Wisdom is needed to heal the wounds that resulted from the contentious elections in Zanzibar. Wisdom is needed to avoid a repeat of the same in Zanzibar in the future. We need to lay the groundwork to ensure that future elections are free, fair and credible,” Shaibu said.

He urged GNU to probe human rights violations that occurred before, during and after the 2020 elections, as part of efforts to ensure that victims of the atrocities get justice.

ACT Wazalendo, he said, also expects the government to institute electoral reforms that will help in restoring trust in electoral processes.

In the October poll, Zanzibar Electoral Commission (ZEC) declared Dr Hussein Ali Mwinyi, son of Tanzania’s second President, the new leader of Zanzibar. He was elected on a Chama Cha Mapinduzi party ticket.

ACT’s presidential candidate Seif Shariff Hamad contested the outcome of the poll.

Following his victory, President Mwinyi last month appointed Hemed Suleiman Abdalla as Zanzibar’s Second Vice President.

He left the position of First Vice President and two Cabinet slots vacant.

Hamad is expected to be named Zanzibar’s Second Vice President.

ACT Wazalendo’s compromise comes weeks after opposition party Chadema expelled its 19 women leaders for accepting special parliamentary seats in Tanzania.

Chadema led by its former presidential candidate Tundu Lissu continues to accuse President John Pombe Magufuli of CCM of rigging the October poll.

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