for proportional representation
By Peter Tindwa
May 11, 2004
Every registered political party in Tanzania that has taken
part in the elections, but did not win a seat in the
Parliament will be represented under proportional
representation system to be introduced next year.
The Speaker of the National Assembly, Pius Msekwa, said this
in Dar es Salaam yesterday during talks with a visiting
seven-man delegation of the American Council of Young
Political Leaders from the United States.
’ÄúWe want to introduce a proportional representation system
to ensure every political party is represented in the
Parliament. The introduction is part of our efforts to
strengthen democracy,’Äù he stated.
According to the Speaker, the new system will be effective
after the forthcoming general elections.’ÄúWe have come to
understand that there is a need to improve our electoral
system because currently some political parties get few
seats,’Äù he said.
He said since the introduction of multiparty democracy a
decade ago, opposition parties have continued to gain ground,
competing aggressively with the ruling party, Chama Cha
Msekwa, however, acknowledged that our parliamentary system is
different from that of the US.’ÄúWe are in the learning
process, gaining experience from other countries to lay down a
strong foundation for democracy,’Äù he said.
Under multiparty system, the electorate has a wider range of
choice, to elect their representative or leader, he
added.Commenting on the country’Äôs determination to ensure
peace and stability in neighbouring countries, Msekwa said
Tanzania has continued to work with other countries to restore
peace and stability in the Great Lakes Region, specifically in
Burundi and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Marjorie Strayer, Adrian Smith, Lee Wendell Loder, Mark
Luckner, Denny Sumpter, Charles Davis and Janea Homoquist form
the seven-man delegation.
Strayer told Msekwa that they are in Tanzania to exchange
views in politics and parliamentary affairs, democracy, local
governments’Äô operations, poverty eradication strategies and
progress attained in economic reforms.
Yesterday evening the delegation was scheduled for discussions
with the Speaker of the Zanzibar House of Representatives,
Kificho Ameir Pandu.
Members of the delegation are visiting the country at the
invitation of the Bunge Foundation, which operates under the
auspices of the Office of the Speaker.