Opposition candidate released in Zanzibar
October 27 2020 11:12 PM
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Seif Sharif Hamad (second right), the leader of the opposition, gives a press conference at The Alli
Seif Sharif Hamad (second right), the leader of the opposition, gives a press conference at The Alliance for Change and Transparency (ACT) head office in Stone Town, Zanzibar.

Reuters Dar Es Salaam

An opposition presidential candidate in Zanzibar detained as he tried to vote early yesterday has been released, after nine people were shot dead by security forces ahead of today’s elections, according to his party.
Zanzibar, an Indian Ocean archipelago, is a semi-autonomous state of the East African country of Tanzania and both are due to elect their presidents and lawmakers in today’s election. Tanzanian President John Pombe Magufuli, whose government is accused of muzzling political dissent and independent media — accusations officials deny — is widely expected to win over his rival, Tundu Lissu, and secure another five-year term.
In a statement early yesterday, the ACT-Wazalendo party said its veteran candidate for Zanzibar’s presidency, Seif Sharif Hamad, was detained at a polling station after going to cast his ballot in advanced voting.
The party tweeted later in the day that their leader had been released. It also said nine people had been shot dead by security forces since Monday. Eight died on the island of Pemba, it said, after clashes between security forces and people who had been trying to stop the army distributing ballot boxes on Monday which they suspected contained pre-ticked votes.



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