Former Tanzanian PM quits leading opposition party

Frederick Sumaye
Frederick Sumaye

Former Tanzanian Prime Minister Frederick Sumaye on Wednesday quit the east African nation’s leading opposition party, Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (CHADEMA), saying he is not satisfied with the party’s internal electoral process.

Sumaye, who was prime minister in 1995-2005, quit the ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), and joined CHADEMA in July 2015, after the did not nominate him to run for president.

The move to quit CHADEMA came a week after Sumaye lost in the opposition party’s internal elections in which he failed to retain his Coast region chairmanship.

“CHADEMA is now fragmented,” Sumaye told a news conference in the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam.

“I have been forced to leave the party. From now on, I am not a member of CHADEMA and I am not joining any other political party,” he said.

In March 2019, another former Tanzanian prime minister, Edward Lowassa, quit CHADEMA and rejoined the CCM in a move that tilted the country’s political landscape.

Lowassa, 66, rejoined the CCM at an event witnessed by CCM national chairman President John Magufuli at the party’s sub-headquarters in Dar es Salaam.

Lowassa quit the CCM in July 2015 and joined CHADEMA, vowing to fight poverty should he get the opportunity to become president under the opposition ticket.

Lowassa, who served as prime minister in 2005-2008, was the first premier to be forced to resign by a fraud scandal in the history of Tanzania.

After the ruling CCM failed to select him as its candidate for the October 2015 presidential election, Lowassa left the party and stood instead as an opposition candidate.

Lowassa was defeated in the election by then CCM candidate Magufuli. Enditem

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