South Africa

Tanzania: Menendez Introduces Resolution Calling on Government of Tanzania To Ensure Free and Fair Elections

U.S. House Africa Subcommittee Hearing on Democracy in Africa. Ranking members Karen Bass and Chris Smith (top row), Ilhan Omar and witnesses at table (bottom row).

Washington, DC — U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today introduced a Senate resolution calling on the Government of Tanzania and all parties to ensure free and fair elections ahead of the country’s October 2020 electoral cycle. Since President John Magufuli’s election in 2015, Tanzanians have witnessed significant erosions of political rights.

“The upcoming elections in Tanzania represent an opportunity for the Government and people of Tanzania to recommit themselves to democratic politics and the rights guaranteed in their constitution,” Menendez said. “I am concerned, however, by the deteriorating political conditions in the country and the Magufuli administration’s use of increasingly repressive measures against political opposition, civil society, and the press. Tanzanian authorities must ensure that the October polls meet accepted standards for free and fair elections, and the United States must support the Tanzanian people at this critical juncture. I urge my colleagues to endorse this common sense resolution  and remain engaged on the issue of democratic backsliding in Tanzania.”

In recent months, Tanzanian authorities have deployed an escalating array of arbitrary and partisan legal actions against political opposition and the media that could further undermine the credibility of the October elections. The Senator’s resolution urges the United States Government, working alongside international partners, to remain engaged in promoting and defending the rights of the Tanzanian people.

A copy of the Senator’s resolution can be found HERE.

RELATED: Key U.S. Congress Members Raise Concerns About Elections and Treatment of U.S. Investors in Tanzania

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