Tanzania army warns against chaos ahead of polls

2010-10-02 13:18

Tanzania’s army warned politicians and activists against disruptions ahead of the country’s general election set for the end of this month.

Army chief of staff, Lieutenant General Abrahman Shungu, said: “There are signs that some individuals and groups intend to disrupt campaigns and breach peace ahead of polls later this month.

“We are well prepared to deal with any individual, a political party or any group of people who will violate the law and breach peace that is currently prevailing in the country.”

The warning came after Freeman Mbowe, head of the opposition group Chadema, told a press conference on Thursday that “blood will be shed” if the October 31 elections are not to be credible.

The polls will be Tanzania’s fourth since multi-party politics were re-introduced in 1992.

Six opposition candidates are challenging President Jakaya Kikwete who is favoured to win the election for a second and final five-year term.

Tanzania has 18 registered political parties.

Kikwete’s governing Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), or Revolutionary Party, has been at the helm since 1977 after replacing a party that governed this east African country from independence in 1961.

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