Tanzania elections: At-a-glance summary

Wednesday October 28 2020

Tanzania's President and Chama Cha Mapinduzi flagbearer John Magufuli (left) and former MP and presidential candidate for main opposition party Chadema Tundu Lissu. FILE PHOTOS | AFP


About 29 million Tanzanians head to the polls on Wednesday to elect new leaders. 

Key points

Electoral body: National Electoral Commission chaired by retired Court of Appeal Judge Semistocles Kaijage.


Registered voters -  29,188,347

Presidential contenders - 15


Female presidential contenders - 2

Female running mates -  5

Registered parties - 19

Parties that had MPs in expiring parliament -  5

Majority party -  CCM won three-quarters of the seats in the 2015 elections with 195 of the 264 constituencies. 

Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) got 35 seats, the Civic United Front (CUF) had 32 seats, and ACT-Wazalendo and NCCR -Mageuzi (one each).

Parliamentary elections -  MPs to compete for 264 constituencies in Mainland and Zanzibar Archipelago, and will lead for five years.

Another 102 members are reserved for women, 5 members are allocated to members of the Zanzibar House of Representatives and 10 members are appointed by the President; all serve 5-year terms.

28 MPs, all CCM, have already been elected unopposed. NEC disqualified opponents over failure to adhere to legal procedure.

873 councillors elected unopposed, all CCM after opponents failed to meet the cut and parties ran out of time to replace them

The NEC website lists 17 foreign election observers, most of them Western Embassies, but includes the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISDA)

Previous Zanzibar elections were contentious and occasionally violent, and domestic and international observers found serious faults with the process. The 2015 electoral process on the mainland was largely deemed free and fair, but in Zanzibar the election was clouded by the Zanzibar Election Commission's unexpected annulment of the Zanzibar polls.

Main presidential candidates

John Magufuli (Chama Cha Mapinduzi)

Tundu Antiphas Lissu (Chama cha Demorasia na Maendeleo (Chadema)

Bernard Kamillius Membe (Alliance for Change and Transparency-Wazalendo (ACT-Wazalendo)

John Paul Shibuda (Ada Tadea)

Leopord Lucas Mahone (NRA)

Muttamwega Bhatt Mghywa (SAU)

Cecilia Augustino Mwanga (Democrasia Makini)

Yeremia Kulwa Maganja (NCCR Mageuzi)

Ibrahim Haruna Lipumba (CUF)

Queen Cuthbert Sendiga (ADC)

Twalib Ibrahim Kadege (UPDP)

Philipo John Fumbo (DP)

Hashim Spunda Rungwe (Chaumma)

Seif Maalim Seif (AAFP)

Khalifan Mohammed Mazrui (UMD)