Tanzania’s Magufuli Arrests Opposition Leader After Winning Presidential Elections

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Reports in Tanzania claim that Zanzibar’s main opposition leader in the just concluded elections has been arrested by police.

ACT Wazelendo Party leader Zanzibar’s Presidential candidate Seif Sharif Hamad was arrested on Thursday afternoon. Senior party officials are also in custody.

“Mwenyekiti wa Chama cha ACT Wazalendo Taifa Maalim Seif Sharif Hamad, Makamu Mwenyekiti Juma Duni Haji, Mjumbe wa Kamati Kuu Ismail Jussa na Viongozi wengine wamekamatwa muda huu huko Zanzibar eneo la Michenzani,” ACT Wazelendo announced on social media.

The arrest happened just a few hours after Seif Sharif had called all Zanzibar residents to for a public demonstration against what he claimed to be vote-rigging. This is the second time in less than 48 hours that Hamad has been arrested. He was arrested at a polling station on Tuesday as he went for early voting. ACT said he was released a few hours later.

The party also accused police of killing at least eight people between Monday and Tuesday.

Unconfirmed reports indicate that Hamad is leading the race to be next President against Hussein Ali Mwinyi, of the ruling  CCM party.

Unconfirmed reports indicate that Hamad is leading the race to be next President against Hussein Ali Mwinyi, of the ruling  CCM party.

The arrest is just the latest in a series of bizarre incidents that have married Wednesday’s national elections in Tanzania. The opposition has accused President Pombe Magufuli of rigging elections.

There have been several reports of ballot stuffing. The government also blocked independent observers from the elections while foreign journalists were not accreditated to cover the elections.

Magufuli’s main challenger Tundi Lissu has issued a statement, saying they will not accept election results.