Tanzanian police on Friday banned the East African nation’s political parties’ security groups to operate during election campaigns, on polling stations and during tallying of votes.

Tanzania Speaking one day before the start of election campaigns on Saturday ahead of the country’s general elections on October 25, Police Operations and Training Commissioner Paul Chagonja directed all political parties to disband their security groups.

“We are insisting that the deployment of security personnel who are not legally recognized is a breach of the country’s laws,” Chagonja told a press conference in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

“These groups have been interfering with police duties something which is contrary to the country’s laws,” he said.

Political parties that have their security groups whose main task was to provide defense on political rallies and defense to party leaders include the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) with green guards and opposition Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (CHADEMA) with red brigade and Civic United Front (CUF) with blue guards.

“Continuing to deploy such groups for any reason is blatant disregard of the country’s constitution and the Political Parties Act, something police cannot tolerate,” said Chagonja.

Chagonja insisted that any political party that would disobey this order would face the music, including taking appropriate legal steps as provided for by the law.

Despite the warning, the police have been condemned most of the time to be the main source of election violence.
Political analysts say it was very common in developing countries for incumbent regimes to use security organs to intimidate and frustrate peace and security during elections. Enditem

Source: Xinhua


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