The Democrat Union of Africa (DUA) and the International Democrat Union (IDU) have observed with grave concern the Tanzanian election campaign and the voting process. We stand with our partners from Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) and their presidential candidate, Tundu Lissu, as well as with the other opposition parties in mainland Tanzania and in Zanzibar.
The Tanzanian elections were conducted in the context of a rapidly declining civic space, of a challenging political and security environment and of the Covid-19 pandemic. The election and its aftermath have been met with a high degree of apprehension that President Magufuli’s regime will manipulate its outcome.
Based on multiple observations made in Tanzania and in Zanzibar, the 2020 elections marked the most significant regression of democracy in the country’s history. The electoral process fell well below acceptable international standards for free, fair, participatory, peaceful, transparent, accountable and credible elections.
Overall, the vote must be considered illegitimate due to widespread election fraud and voter intimidation. The regime made no attempts to legitimize the electoral process. What we have witnessed is the utter breakdown of democracy and the establishment of an autocracy in Tanzania.
Over the last few days, we have seen the regime retaliate and arrest members from all components of the opposition in Tanzania and in Zanzibar. In addition, we have learned of massive human rights abuses perpetrated by police and by security forces. We request that the authorities in Tanzania and in Zanzibar refrain from any form of violence and protect all citizens of Tanzania.
IDU and DUA support Mr. Lissu in his request that the international community reject the published election results. We demand the immediate release of all arrested opposition members, and demand information on those who have been reported missing over the last several days.