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Tanzania: 5 Cabinet ministers lose seats in parliament

Published:Tuesday | October 27, 2015 | 12:00 AM
Officials from the electoral commission, watched by representatives of political parties, start the vote-counting process at a polling station in the Temeke district of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
Tanzania’s ruling party presidential candidate John Magufuli casts his vote in his hometown of Chato, northern Tanzania.


Five Cabinet members from Tanzania's ruling party have lost their parliamentary seats, according to partial results released yesterday by the country's election commission.

They lost to candidates representing an opposition alliance of four parties including Chadema, the main opposition party.

Results for the presidential election are trickling in and full results are expected tomorrow. Tensions are rising between rival supporters on Tanzania's mainland and on the semi-autonomous island archipelago of Zanzibar, which also voted Sunday.

Tanzania's presidential race is the most tightly contested since this East African country became independent in 1961. The ruling party's presidential candidate, Works Minister John Magufuli, is challenged by former Prime Minister Edward Lowassa, who used to be a high-ranking member of the ruling party until he defected to the opposition after failing to become the ruling party's presidential candidate.

Suleiman Kova, a police commander in Dar es Salaam, said 166 people are being held on allegations they published unofficial poll results on social media.

The voting was largely peaceful but there are concerns that a close final result may spark violence.