second and final term

Tanzania: ‘Dark days ahead’ says opposition as Magufuli sworn in for second term

By Abdul Halim, in Dar es Salaam

Posted on November 5, 2020 16:16

Tanzania Election
Tanzanian president President John Magufuli waves to Tanzanians as he arrives for his swearing in ceremony in Dodoma, Thursday, Nov. 5, 2020. (AP Photo)

President John Magufuli was inaugurated on Thursday as president of the United Republic of Tanzania for a second and final term just days after a chaotic election known in the history of the east African nation. To this new chapter, the opposition say dark days are to come.

Magufuli won his reelection with about 84% of total valid votes against his main challenger Tundu Lissu who received 13% of total valid votes.

Second term begins

In his inauguration speech at Jamhuri Stadium on Thursday in the administrative capital Dodoma, President Magufuli thanked Tanzanians for giving him another term, adding: “Elections have passed now it’s time to work, my administration will continue the fight against corruption, creating employment opportunities as well as continued work on building major projects.”

Meanwhile, the head of state appealed to all political spectrum to work together to improve Tanzania.

“My government will also continue to protect national resources, animals, poverty and other challenges facing Tanzanians,” he quoted.

The inauguration event was attended by several African leaders including Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa, Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni, Comoros’s President Azali Assoumani and Burundi’s Prime Minister Alain-Guillaume Bunyoni.

READ MORE Tanzania elections 2020: ‘The country will go the way of Zimbabawe’ – Tundu Lissu

Speaking at the ceremony, Uganda’s Museveni said it’s high time for east African nations to promote trade among the member states.

“After the independence most African leaders failed to build their nation because of selfishness, but Tanzania under Mwalimu Nyerere played crucial role for [the] reunification of Africa. It’s time now to focus on economic aspects,” said Museveni, who has been head of Uganda since January 1986.

Election marred by violence and violations

Magufuli won a second term in an election that was marred by violence, detentions of opposition candidates, media crackdown, intimidation of political leaders by security organs, and in many places across the country opposition candidates were disqualified from participating in the general polls.

READ MORE Tanzania elections 2020: John Magufuli in bitter race against Tundu Lissu

These actions prompted international observers and diplomatic figures in Tanzania, mainly the US, UK, Norway and Canada, to declare that Magufuli’s reelection came through irregularities and lacked credibility.