THE United States of America says it is encouraged by President John Magufuli’s recent assurance to stakeholders that the 2020 general elections will be free, fair and transparent.

A statement issued by the United States Embassy in Tanzania said that the US welcomes an election where all the citizens and the candidates from all parties are able to gather peacefully, express their opinions and campaign on an equal basis.

“We are encouraged by President Magufuli’s January 21 assurances that the 2020 elections will be free, fair and transparent and by his invitation to international election observers,” said part of the statement.

The US, through the embassy, urged for rapid and transparent registration of voters, the creation of an independent electoral commission and early accreditation of credible long and short-term national and international elections observers.

When addressing diplomats at a party to welcome the 2020 New Year at the State House in the Dar es Salaam, President Magufuli assured the diplomats of peaceful, free and fair general elections come October 2020.

President Magufuli said international observers will be welcome to witness how Tanzania was maturing democratically.

“As you are all aware, our country will hold general elections later this year. I want to assure you that the government is well prepared to ensure that the elections will be free and fair,” said President Magufuli.

Over 20 million Tanzanians out of a population of 55 million will vote for councillors, and parliamentarians in the general elections.

The National Electoral Commission (NEC) recently announced the updating of the voter registration which started on July 18, 2019, in Kilimanjaro Region.

The exercise has already covered 28 regions with the exception of Dar es Salaam, Coast and some districts of Morogoro Region.

In January 2019, Anthony Mavunde, the Deputy Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office responsible for Parliamentary Affairs, Labour, Employment, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, told parliament that four million new voters were expected to be registered during the updating of the voter registration.

Tanzania conducted its last general elections on October 25, 2015, when about 23.7 million voters were registered, according to the national electoral body.


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