Tanzanians have today (Wednesday October 28, 2020) taken to the ballot to elect their leaders in yet another general election that has been deemed as a two horse race between incumbent president John Pombe Magufuli of Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) and the opposition party Chadema’s Tundu Lissu.
Magufuli, whose party has ruled Tanzania since independence in 1961, is seeking a second term in office.
Tundu Lissu, who survived an assassination attempt three years ago, returned from Belgium in July where he had undergone rounds of treatment for gunshot wounds, and is the main Magufuli’s challender in this year’s elections.
However, Tundu Lissu has taken to social media to claim that there irregularities have already marred the voting process.
He argued that he had received reports which indicated widespread irregularities in the form of preventing his polling agents from accessing polling stations.
According to Tundu Lissu, stuffed ballot boxes had already been seized in Kawe, Dar-es-Salaam.
He claimed that if the process continues in that manner, there would be a mass democratic action, which he claimed that will be the only option to protect the integrity of the election.
“Voting reports indicate widespread irregularities in the form of preventing our polling agents from accessing polling stations. Stuffed ballot boxes seized in Kawe, Dar. If this continues, mass democratic action will be the only option to protect the integrity of the election,” Tundu Lissu tweeted.
Lissu’s campaign was suspended for seven days after being accused of sedition by the electoral commission. He had reportedly said that Mr Magufuli was planning to rig the elections, but the commission said there were no such attempts.
Earlier on, there were reports of restricted internet access plus the arrest of an opposition leader in the semi-autonomous islands of Zanzibar.
Voters have until 16:00 local time to cast their ballot. Results are expected to be announced within one week.