ZEC recently announced the re-run of the elections on March 20, a move opposed by the opposition Civic United Front (CUF) which claims that it won the annulled October 25 General Election.
Addressing members of Dar es Salaam senior citizens, President Magufuli said he will not interfere with decisions made by ZEC because the electoral body was as independent as other electoral bodies across the world.
He said that although there has been a push from different people asking him to step in, he will remain silent, adding that ZEC was free to decide and do whatever it found was right.
He, however, warned that his silence would not stop him from ensuring that the east African archipelago remained peaceful.
“It is my responsibility to ensure that safety is maintained, and whoever will try to put it at stake our security organs are open eyed and will work on them accordingly,” said President Magufuli.
On Friday, CUF said it would be ready to resume talks with the ruling CCM over the Zanzibar political stalemate only if ZEC, CCM and the government agreed to halt ongoing preparations for the March 20 polls re-run.
Seif Sharif Hamad, the CUF secretary general, said talks remained the only option for the ongoing political crisis in Zanzibar.
On January 22, ZEC announced March 20, 2016, as the re-run date for the disputed October 25 General Election. ZEC cancelled election results on October 28, 2015, saying the polls were marred by irregularities.
However, one week after the ZEC announced the re-run date, CUF declared it was not going to take part in it, arguing that it was defilement of democracy and blatant disrespect for the will of the people.
The decision was reached during the party’s governing council closed-door meeting held in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.
The opposition party maintained that Zanzibaris chose their leaders during the cancelled October 25 General Election by 54 per cent. Enditem