1.1 UNPO and its objectives
The Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) was founded in1991 by representatives of occupied nations, indigenous peoples, minoritiesand other disenfranchised peoples who struggle to preserve their culturalidentities, protect their basic human rights, safeguard the environment or to regain their lost countries. These peoples are not adequately represented inother international fora such as the United Nations. One of the principal objectives of UNPO is the promotion of non-violent methods for the resolution of disputes involving nations and peoples and the advancement of theirlegitimate rights and aspirations by peaceful, diplomatic methods. The organization is in a favourable position to detect early signs of tensions and potential conflict, since it deals with the people and the movements who are often at the centre of controversial issues involving political, cultural or economic rights of minorities and peoples.
UNPO provides a legitimate international forum for unrepresented nations and peoples. It also provides many services, including assistance in obtaining access to UN bodies, conflict prevention and conflict resolution services, assistance in strategic planning, election and referendum monitoring, educational internships and assistance in cultural preservation and promotion.
Furthermore, UNPO organizes training programs in diplomacy, legal advice, training and assistance with respect to human rights, democracy, media relations and non-violence strategies.
For many of its nations and peoples, UNPO is the principal channel of communication to the international community. The UNPO Secretariat provides means to help its members to keep governments, international organizations, NGOs and the media informed of their situation as they see it. At the same time, UNPO gives governments, the UN and others a rare opportunity to meet with or hear the views of legitimate representatives of peoples and minorities they might otherwise not have access to.
UNPO s financial and other resources are still too small to be as effective as it should be. Its activities in this area have therefore been limited to the sending of missions to troubled areas, at the request of its members, and drawing
attention of various governments and international organizations to the danger of violent conflict. Mission have included those to monitor elections in Tatarstan (March 1992), Iraqi Kurdistan (May 1992), Kosova (May 1992), the fact-finding and diplomatic missions to Abkhazia and the North Caucasus (June and November 1992 and in December 1993); the mission to the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, and to Albania (in January an again in August 1994), the fact-finding mission to Rwanda and neighbouring countries to investigate the situation of the indigenous Batwa of Rwanda (from October to December 1994), the mission to Ingushetia and Chechenia (December 1994 and again in July 1995), election monitoring mission to Taiwan (December 1994 and again in December 1995), the fact-finding mission to Ogoniland, Nigeria (February 1995) and visits to Australia (1992), the Cordillera (Philippines) (1992), Chuvash (December 1993), the Crimea (May 1994), and Sakha Republic (August 1995).
1.2 Background to the UNPO Mission
In response to the request of the Zanzibar Democratic Alternative (ZADA), the organization representing Zanzibar within UNPO, the General Secretary sent a mission to observe the election in Zanzibar on October 22, 1995. The Covenant of the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization, which is the Organizations charter, authorizes the Organization to provide its Member nations and peoples Rassistance in the development of democratic institutions and processes and in the monitoring of elections and referenda. (Art.2 (h)). Zanzibar became a Member of UNPO in August 1991.
On October 22, 1995, Zanzibaris went to the polls to elect a President, Members of the House of Representatives and local government councillors. On October 29, all Tanzanians, including Zanzibaris, went to the polls to elect a President of Tanzania and the parliament of that country. The polls were the first multi party elections held since 1964, when Tanganyika and Zanzibar formed the United Republic of Tanzania. These elections were judged to be an important step in the democratization process of Tanzania, and indicative of the strength of the opposition parties since 1992, when the multi party system was first adopted.
The UNPO election monitoring mission to Zanzibar was made possible by the financial support of the Norwegian Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
1.3 Objectives of the Mission
The mandate of the Mission was as follows:
to ascertain, in an impartial manner, whether the elections were free and fair and adequately reflect the wishes of the people of Zanzibar;
to engage in fact finding activities in order to gather first hand information on the situation in Zanzibar from the local population, government representatives and local authorities; to publish the findings with respect to the election monitoring as well as to the background situation in Zanzibar, in a report.
1.4 Composition of the Mission
Members of the Mission were Dr. Ben Naanen, Member of the UNPO Steering Committee and representative of the Ogoni People of Nigeria, and Ms. Erica Zwaan, Coordinator Africa Desk at the UNPO International Secretariat in The Hague.
The Mission travelled and worked in Zanzibar from October 18 to 31, 1995. On Election day, the Mission visited over 15 polling stations in urban and rural districts, including the constituencies of JangUombe and Mwemba Makumbi in Zanzibar Town district, and Mwera and Dimani in the southern district.
The Mission took interest in the whole electoral process, including registration and voting procedures and popular participation. The Mission met with the Chairman and the Director of the Zanzibar Electoral Commission, the Chief Coordinator of Zemog1 Professor Haroub Othman, and other local monitors, international observers, including those sent by the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity, officials of the different parties, including the presidential candidate for the opposition party Seif Sharif Hamad, the Deputy General Secretary Mr. Ali Ameir of the ruling party CCM, Mr Abdul Rahman Babu, Former Minister of the Union Government, Professor Abdul Sheriff, Professor of History at the University of Dar es Salaam and Conservator of the Stone Town Museum in Zanzibar, as well as Zanzibaris of various walks of life.
The Mission also attended several pre-election rallies of different political parties.
2.1 Zanzibar background a Introduction
The outcome of the first multi-party elections for the Presidency of Zanzibar, a split vote of 50.2 to 49.8 percent, underlines the deep political division on the islands. The reality of this split right down the middle, cannot be seen outside the context of the history of Zanzibar and of its relations to the mainland of Tanzania. It therefore seems appropriate to take a closer look at the history of Zanzibar in general, and of the last multi-party elections, in 1963, that led to a bloody clash, in which thousands lost their lives.
The name Zanzibar derives from the Arabic words Zinj-bar meaning land of the black. In earlier days, Zanzibar was used to denominate the largest part of the East Africa, but currently the name Zanzibar refers to a number of islands of the East African Coast. The islands include Unguja, the main island and capital of Zanzibar, Pemba, Tumbatu, Chumbe etc.. The coral islands are located ca. 40 kilometres off the coast of East Africa, in the Indian Ocean. These tropical islands, covering 1,651 square kilometres, are inhabited by some 780,000 people of multiracial decent. The heterogeneous population is a result of centuries of immigration from Africa, the Middle East and the Indian subcontinent, and its importance as a commercial centre in the Indian Ocean trading system. During the period of the Sultans and through the colonial period, the main economy was the slave trade. After independence in 1963,coconuts and cloves became the primary export products. The official language is Kiswahili. Other languages spoken are English and Arabic. More than ninety percent of the population is Muslim, while the remainder are Christians, Hindus or practice traditional animistic religions.
b Political history
Throughout its history, Zanzibar has been under the political influence of Persians, Portuguese and Omani Arabs at various times. Since the 19th century, Zanzibar was a Sultanate. In 1832, the ruler of Oman, Seyyid Said bin Sultan, transferred his capital from Muscat to Zanzibar. The Sultan concluded treaties of amity and commerce with several foreign powers, and had a lively trade in ivory and slaves from the African mainland. The introduction of the clove tree by the Sultan, in the early 19th century, made it the world's largest producer of cloves. In 1890 Zanzibar was declared a British protectorate which reduced the Sultan's authority. The British Government, through its Residents in Zanzibar, ran the administration with the help of the Sultanate, dominated mainly by Zanzibaris of Omani origin.
Although the first profits of clove production were made with the use of slaves, the slave trade disappeared towards the end of the colonial period. Clove production became dominant, as virtually no efforts were made by the colonial administrators to diversify Zanzibars economy. Although clove cultivation requires very little constant labour, the harvesting has to be done by a large but temporary labour force. Clove production therefore requires a migrant labour system. In the late 19th century it was clear that the use of slaves was less economic than temporary paid clove pickers. Mainlanders were employed for the constant labour, whereas Zanzibaris were used for the temporary labour. This process, through which the indigenous people were turned into a reserve labour force, took place over a long period. Fertile farm lands were appropriated by landowners, forcing peasants to less fertile plots. Whereas on Pemba, a peasant could support his family off land on any place on the island, on Unguja, the less fertile lands forced the peasants to supplement their income by becoming labourers. This led to a relatively rich peasant class in Pemba and a semi-proletarianised peasant-labourer class on Unguja. The majority of the clove pickers therefore came from Unguja. More and more, these indigenous workers became the competitors of the mainlanders for the available jobs, especially on Unguja, where peasants abandoned their lands and took to the town, because of food shortage. The mainlanders were seen as foreigners, and this distinction was enough to divide the emerging proletariat among ethnic lines. It is surprising that famines could occur, since there was, and still is, sufficient land to support the population on the islands. These food shortages were a direct result of the cultivation of cloves: lands were expropriated for clove production and the colonial state made no effort to ensure that Zanzibar was self-sufficient. Zanzibar therefore relied on imported food. Peasants who needed the income of clove picking neglected to prepare their own lands for planting, or were away during harvest time.
The social structure at the height of the expansion of world trade in the 18th and 19th centuries was made up of a rich landowner class, mostly of (Omani) Arab descent, which used slave labour; a rich merchant class, often identified with those of Indian descent; and of indigenous Zanzibar labourers and peasants.
Under the British colonial rule, a transformation of this social structure started. The abolishment of the slave trade led to the decline of the power of the landowner class and the start of a working class.
The British declared Zanzibar a free-port because of its decline as a commercial power. This led to the disintegration of the merchant class. The decline of these two major classes, the landowners and merchants, led to a further deprivation of the labourers, poor peasants and the poor in town. The division between these classes were partly determined by the economic factors mentioned, but sharpened by ethnic factors fostered by the British colonialists. Although the process of social integration had been going on for centuries of intermarriage, ethnicity became a political factor. This can largely be attributed to the recognition by the British administration of the numerous associations that emerged in the 1930s throughout Zanzibar. The political recognition in the 1950s of these ethnicity-based organizations, led to the idea that political parties coincided with ethnicity. It was during this period that the notion of Zanzibar nationalism took root. The first anti-colonial uprising that enjoyed massive workers' support took place in 1951. The Anthrax Revolt marked the first time the peasants of Unguja revolted against a project by the British administration to inoculate all cattle against several diseases. Rumours that the purpose was not to save the cattle, but to kill them when the price of cattle was at its peak.
The Zanzibar Nationalist Part (ZNP) was formed in 1955 by the indigenous Zanzibaris with the assistance of the Zanzibar Arab Association, then an anti-colonial movement. The ZNP had a nationalist ideology and therefore gained support among the indigenous rich peasants, middle-class peasants and workers. In 1957 the Afro-Shirazi Party (ASP) was formed, which is often described as the African or mainland worker party, set up in reaction to the
anti-colonial movement. The Afro-Shirazi Party won the 1957 elections overwhelmingly. In 1959, the Pemba members seceded from the Afro-Shirazi Party to form the Zanzibar and Pemba People's Party (ZPPP). ZPPP virtually had no support in Unguja. Further elections were held in 1961 and 1963.
On June 24, 1963, Zanzibar was granted internal self- government and a new constitution was brought into effect. The elections in July 1963 were won by a coalition between ZNP and ZPPP. On the eve of independence, a group of people left the ZNP to form the Umma Party. On December 10, 1963, under a coalition government of ZNP and ZPPP, Zanzibar was granted independence by the British rulers and the first Constitution of Independent Zanzibar was promulgated. The Umma Party entered into a tactical alliance with the ASP, which was the official parliamentary opposition.
On December 16, 1963, Zanzibar was accepted as a full member of the United Nations. The Independent Constitution did not survive for long.
On January 12, 1964, the coalition government of the Zanzibar Nationalist Party (ZNP) and the Zanzibar and Pemba Peoples Party (ZPPP) was overthrown in an insurrection organized by the Afro-Shirazi Party (ASP) and the Umma Party. Following this coup, the Peoples Republic of Zanzibar was declared and a Revolutionary Council was installed. The ASP, in particular the so-called Committee of Fourteen of the ASP, banned all existing political parties, forcing their leaders to flee. Leaders of the overthrown government were detained. With the help of President Nyerere of Tanganyika, most of the progressive political leaders of both ASP and Umma Party were transferred to the mainland. It is estimated that in the period between 1964 and 1972, some 15 percent of the population of Zanzibarm was transferred to the mainland. Without the consent of the people of Zanzibar, a treaty was signed on April 26, 1964, by the then President of the Peoples Republic Zanzibar, Abeid Karume, and the President of the Republic of Tanganyika, Julius K. Nyerere, uniting the two independent states in the present United Republic of Tanzania. The Zanzibar Revolutionary Council launched a reign of terror marked by frequent detention, torture and execution of political opponents. Other repressive policies included the nationalization of private property. Political opponents lost their jobs, became isolated, and their children were discriminated against in their educational possibilities. Human rights abuses and economic hardship forced many intellectuals to flee to the mainland. The mainland profited from this cheap labour force, and treated the Zanzibaris as second class citizens.
In 1972, President Abeid Karume was murdered. The ASP Committee of Fourteen fell out of favour with Nyerere and most of their members were subsequently transferred to the mainland. This further strengthened Nyerere's grip on Zanzibar and reduced its sovereignty. In the period following 1972, many large property owners (most of them of Indian descent) were deported. President Karume was succeeded by Aboud Jumbe, a friend of President Nyerere and in favour of the Union. To appease the relations with the mainland, Jumbe invited experts from the mainland to assist him in governing, preferring them to Zanzibari experts. In 1977, Zanzibar's only political party, the ASP, merged with Tanganyika's only political organ Tanganyika Africa Union (TANU) and formed Chama Cha Mapinduzi Cha Tanzania (CCM). Jumbe expected to become President of the United Republic of Tanzania when Nyerere resigned. However, when Nyerere favoured a mainlander, Jumbe changed his position towards the Union government, and took on a more nationalistic stance. Aboud Jumbe paved the way for the first Constitution of Zanzibar in 1979, which was followed by a second in 1984. In 1984 Jumbe was forced to resign, taking many top Zanzibari politicians with him. In that same year, Ali Hassan Mwinyi replaced Nyerere as President of the Union. This period is often considered to be the peak of the Zanzibari nationalist and anti-Union feelings. The Union government responded by deploying over 6,000 troops in Zanzibar to contain eventual uprisings and to replace the Zanzibar armed forces.
During the planned general and presidential elections of 1990, Zanzibar launched a campaign to boycott the elections, in an effort to show the international community that the Zanzibar demand for a referendum to express the will of the people of Zanzibar with regard to the union with Tanganyika was backed by the majority of the people. It is estimated In 1992, largely due to pressure from its donor countries, Tanzania amended its constitution to end the one-party state and to inaugurate a multi-party system. The first multi-party elections for both Zanzibar and the mainland were set for 1995. Although this represented a major change on paper, the official attitude towards a peaceful political opposition did not really change. Political opponents and critics continued to be repressed by the government, especially in the case of Zanzibar. According to a report by Amnesty International of January 1995, the repression focused on less high-profile opposition leaders and on the obstruction of the political activities of the opposition. Supporters of the main opposition party Civic United Front (CUF) have been charged with possessing seditious materials and with organizing illegal assemblies. This process of harassment and obstruction of the campaign of the opposition continued throughout the prepar
c The call for self-determination
The majority of the Zanzibar population is said to be dissatisfied with the structure of the Union. Neither the people of Zanzibar nor those of Tanganyika were consulted before the signing of the Union Declaration. While the ruling party CCM favours the Union, the Zanzibar political opposition, together with a group of fifty parliamentarians on the mainland, have repeatedly called for a referendum to decide on the future of the Union. They feel the existing Union of two governments has not been beneficial politically, socially or economically, either to the people of Zanzibar or Tanganyika. The Union Declaration that was signed in 1964 was intended to cover three jurisdictions: matters related to the Union, to Tanganyika and to Zanzibar. In practice, however, the first two jurisdictions were placed under one government: the Union government. The Articles of the Union provided for a Constituent Assembly to be appointed from both Zanzibar and Tanganyika, to establish a Union Constitution. However, this Constituent Assembly was never formed, and the Constitution of Tanganyika was transformed into the Union Constitution. The Articles of the Union were never ratified by the Zanzibar legislature. The merger of the ASP and TANU into CCM created a one-party state with supreme authority over three distinct jurisdictions.
d Current situation
The situation in Zanzibar today is a sensitive one. The economic situation of the people of Zanzibar is alarming. The authorities of Zanzibar have failed to develop the infrastructure needed to keep up with domestic needs. This has led to a lack of adequate roads, water supply, a decent sewage system, or of regular electricity supply, especially on Pemba. The declining demand for cloves and their diminished value, has further damaged Zanzibars economic position. Resources are required to modernise the agriculture and industry.
The current economic situation is driving many young people abroad, since they see no future in Zanzibar. Since there is no university in Zanzibar, students leave Zanzibar for Dar es Salaam on the mainland. Not many of them return to Zanzibar after finishing their studies, because of little job possibilities on the islands. People employed by the Government on Zanzibar earn far less than their counterparts on the mainland. These wages are often not sufficient to support a family.
The UNPO Mission witnessed a high degree of popular participation: at polling stations visited, the voter turnout ranged from 95% to 98%. The voters showed a remarkable degree of discipline and enthusiasm for the election process. Many voters who had arrived at the polling stations as early as 7.00 a.m. were still waiting at 7.00 p.m. to cast their vote, in spite of heavy rains. Yet no major incidents were reported. The official polling hours were 8.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m., with 300 registered voters per polling station. The Mission observed a late and difficult start to the voting, which caused an extension of polling by several hours at some voting centres. At some polling stations the electoral materials did not arrive in time, which caused a delay of up to three hours at such stations. The voting process was lengthy and inefficient due to complicated voting procedures. The slow process can partly be attributed to the inefficiency of the polling clerks, who took a long time to follow the procedures, and was aggravated by the illiteracy of many voters.
There was a lack of consistency in the colour of the ballot papers and corresponding ballot boxes which led to confusion and which caused further delay, especially among elderly voters. At some stations, the Mission observed registration problems: due to inconsistency in the names and registration numbers of voters with those in the electoral register, some people were not able to vote. At one station in Mwemba Makumbi constituency, the Mission was told that polling clerks filled out ballots for voters on at least three occasions. The incidents were reported by a CUF member.In a number of cases there was a shortage of electoral materials. At some polling stations the ballot papers for the local government poll were not available, resulting in the postponement of the local government poll at three centres visited. In other centres, the voter complaint forms were not displayed.
The counting of the ballots started late everywhere, caused partly by a lack clear guidelines from the Zanzibar Electoral Commission (ZEC) on the counting procedure. The counting process was further delayed by inadequate lighting at the voting centres.
There was a general failure to publish results at local polling stations immediately after the counting, as required by the electoral law. The results of the elections were declared late by the Zanzibar Electoral Commission: the winner of the presidential election was not announced until 4 days after the voting took place.
The procedures leading up to and those following the polling were even morecontroversial. A day after the polling, the presidential candidate of the Civic United Front sent a petition to the Chairman of the Zanzibar Electoral Commission accusing the Commission and the ruling party of perpetrating a catalogue of electoral malpractices throughout the electoral process from the time of voting registration to the declaration of the results. The ruling party Chama Cha Mapinduzi made a similar complaint. While most of the malpractices that allegedly took place were not readily observable to the Mission and other international observers, it is generally agreed that a certain measure of irregularities took place in arriving at the final results. There are also strong indications that the voter registration was conducted in a manner that put the opposition at a disadvantage. The amended electoral law which required a minimum residency of five consecutive years to qualify for the ballot effectively disenfranchised thousands of Zanzibari migrants suspected of harbouring sympathy for the opposition. In addition, Government control of certain sections of the Tanzanian media did
a Pre-polling irregularities
Although not present in Zanzibar during the registration and campaign period before the elections, the Mission gathered reports on irregularities during the period preceding the ballot, that are important for a comprehensive view on the first multi party elections since 1964. Registration for the election of the Zanzibar President, House of Representatives and Councillors, started on August 6, 1995. Out of some 700,000 people, 348,934 were registered as voters. The most disputed issue in the whole registration process was the law of residence. Under this provision, for a voter to be allowed to cast all five votes, he or she should have lived in the same constituency for five consecutive years. If this was not the case, the voter either had to register in the constituency were he/she lived for five years, or stay in the new one, where he/she would then only be allowed to vote for the Presidential elections. The majority of those affected by this law were people that moved from Pemba to Unguja. Pemba is historically a stronghold of the opposition; most of the Wapembad are poor people who cannot afford to travel to Pemba for the registration and later the elections. Furthermore, the absence of identity cards to verify a personUs residence generally made it difficult to determine the five year constituency rule, leaving room for random registration practices. The Mission met with a man (a known CUF supporter) who had lived in the same house for fifty years, yet he was refused registration since he had no documents to prove his residence. The report by Zemog also mentions complaints by the opposition parties that the provisions were not uniformly applied. Furthermore, the residence provision only applied to Zanzibar and not to the other half of the Union, the mainland Tanganyika. Complaints have also been heard about the refusal of ZEC to extend the period of registration, whereas NEC5 on the mainland had extended it by 10 days. This prevented many Zanzibaris from registering. The election campaigns started in the beginning of September and ended on October 21, a day before the elections. There were many complaints by the opposition parties of permission to hold meetings being denied, or of meetings of the opposition being broken up by the police of the Field Force Unit, both State bodies. Other complaints referred to the attention the different parties got from the state own media: reports about unequal attention in the press and other media showed a clear favouring of the ruling party.
b Post-electoral developments
The outcome of the Presidential elections of Zanzibar, declared only four days after the polling, have been contested from several sides. The results that were made public by ZEC showed a very narrow victory of 165,271 votes for the incumbent President of CCM, Salmin Amour, to 163, 706 for the opposition candidate of CUF, Seif Sharif Hamad. The number of spoiled votes were 4,922. This means that out of the unspoiled votes cast,
Amour got 50.2 percent and
Hamad 49.8 percent.
For the parliamentary elections, the results showed a similar narrow difference. Out of the 50 elected seats Zanzibar holds in the Union parliament, 26 were won by CCM and 24 by CUF. It is important to note that all 21 seats on Pemba were won by CUF (on Unguja 26 were won by CCM and 3 by CUF). On October 24, before the results were officially announced, the CUF candidate Hamad demanded complete recounting of the presidential votes and accessibility of voter registers in all 50 constituencies before the results would be announced. CUF did this in a letter addressed to the Chairman of ZEC, Mr Zuberi Juma Mzee. Mr Hamad demanded an explanation for the fact that the number of voters exceeded those registered in three constituencies.
On October 25, the ruling party CCM demanded complete nullification of the results of the elections, citing a number of irregularities. CCM said in a statement to ZEC that new elections should be held in three to six months time. The statement, that was signed by the CCM Deputy General Secretary Mr. Ali Ameir, said the elections were not free and fair. Mr. Ameir said the delay in voting, had led to discouragement of prospective voters. Furthermore he claimed there had been harassment and intimidation of voters by CUF supporters at polling stations, especially in Pemba. Mr. Ameir also noted differences between the election results announced at the polling stations and those released by the Commission.
The confusion caused by the alarmingly long counting procedure following the ballot and the recrimination about the lack of transparency of the electoral process was shared by both parties. The similarity of complaints about irregularities lodged by both parties lends support to the feeling shared by many international observers that irregularities did in fact take place. The United Nations international observers investigated the claims of irregularities in the three constituencies named in the letter by CUF. A recount witnessed by the UN electoral team at these stations led to the conclusions that there had been Rarithmetical errors in the counting process. An offer by the UN team to re- examine all the figures, however, was turned down by ZEC.
On the afternoon of October 26, ZEC announced that CCM's Salmin Amour had won, and was to be sworn in the next day. In spite of the demands for a nullification of the results only a day before, CCM accepted the results. After the announcement of the results, the electoral files were closed, leaving no possibility for reconciliation of the figures by national or international observers.
Although Zemog, as well as Western representatives urged that whatever party would win, to form a government of national unity, the declared winner, Salmin Amour, announced on October 27 that he did not plan to form a coalition government with CUF. He promised to serve all Zanzibaris without ca'sing a division between Unguja and Pemba, the twin islands that form Zanzibar.
Considering that all 21 parliamentary seats on Pemba were won by CUF, such a division appears to be almost impossible to overcome. Amour further said that the government he would form would safeguard the union with mainland Tanzania.
c Reactions by other observers
The observer team of the Organization of African Unity declared the elections to have been free and transparent. At that time, only two days after the elections, no claims of irregularities had yet been raised by either of the contesting parties.
The UN observer team refrained from commenting on the legitimacy of the balloting and the vote counting until after the Union elections a week later. On October 26, the United States were the first of the foreign donor governments to state that they were aware of serio's discrepancies identified between results declared by ZEC and those recorded by observers in at least one constituency. According to the statement The United States government(....) finds it necessary to s'spend comment on the election results until these and other possible discrepancies are reconciled. The following day, the Netherlands Ambassador to Tanzania issued a statement on behalf of the donor countries, asking the donor community to further investigate the discrepancies of the Zanzibar elections. We understand that international observers have found discrepancies in the compilation of the votes for the presidency. A reconciliation of figures is needed, the statement said in part10. Wester observers later stated they found Rserio's discrepancies in the compilation of results for the presidencys.
The Zanzibar political movements HAMAKI*11 and ZADA*12, based in Denmark, also issued a joint statement on October 27, strongly protesting the results of the elections and condemning what it called massive vote-rigging during the elections. The statement further demanded recounting of the votes by international observers. The local Zanzibari monitoring group Zemog published a report on October 25, before the results of the Presidential elections were announced. The report highlighted a number of handicaps the opposition had to deal with, beca'se the ruling party had failed to disassociate itself from the state13. The report draws attention to discrepancies from the registration, through the campaign to the counting of votes. These included discrepancies between the number of voters registered and of votes cast and the ref'sal by ZEC to announce the results of the presidential ballot per constituency.
d Conclusions by the UNPO Mission
Considering the total election process, from registration to the declaration of the results, it is clear that the Zanzibar elections can hardly be called free and fair, although the polling itself was conducted in an orderly and peaceful manner. The general outcome, aside from the allegations of rigging can be seen as reflecting to a large extend the will of the people of Zanzibar. However, this outcome clearly shows the political division down the middle. Since the re-elected ruling party has ref'sed the possibility of a government of national unity, respecting the will of the people, it is hard to see that the current political stalemate is in the best interest of the nation. The political parties should put the interest of Zanzibar before the interest of their parties, and find a way to incorporate the will of the people in the ruling of the country. To this end, tolerance, debate and cooperation seem indispensable.
In a statement issued by the General Secretary of UNPO on October 30, 1995, the following observations were made:
UNPO is pleased that multi-party elections were called and held in Tanzania and, especially in Zanzibar. This constitutes a positive step towards democracy, and an avenue for the people of Zanzibar to express their views and determine their own destiny. The high degree of popular participation in the voting on October 22 shows the desire of the people for democracy.
UNPO is concerned about a number of irregularities which occurred or are alleged to have occurred during and after the voting. The UNPO observer mission believes that some of these irregularities could be attributed to inefficiency, lack of training and practical difficulties. However, in relation to the presidential election in particular, allegations of fraud, vote rigging and irregularities in the counting are very serio's and warrant a full investigation.
The unexplained delay (of four days) in announcing the results of the vote for the Zanzibar President- an alleged victory for the incumbent President Salim Amour of the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party by a margin of 0.4 percent- and the serio's discrepancies found by international observers in the counting and compilation of the votes, lends support to the opposition parties' denunciation of the process and of the declared result.
UNPO calls for a full investigation into all allegations of irregularities, and a reconciliation and eventual recount of the votes. UNPO also commends the donor countries for expressing their concerns as to the results, and calls on them and other governments, the UNDP and other international organizations to stand firm on the demand that all condition for free, fair and transparent elections are met before recognizing the results of the elections.
e. Recommendations by the UNPO Mission on the Zanzibar Elections
On the basis of the observed inadequacies, the UNPO Mission makes the following recommendations to improve the conduct of future elections and the effectiveness of multi party democracy in Zanzibar:
The Electoral Commission has to be completely independent to win the confidence of the contesting parties and ensure the integrity of future elections.
The allegations of malpractices made by the parties should be satisfactorily investigated before swearing in the new government, so that the legitimacy of that government is not abridged.
No effort should be spared to commence polling in time. Administrative and logistical problems m'st be eliminated. The election process requires simplified, less time consuming procedures and more effective training of electoral personnel, as well as voter education. Increasing the number of polling clerks is important to accelerate the voting process. Another major ca'se of slowness - illiteracy- can only be overcome on a long-term basis through mass education;
Early counting after the close of the polls is possible if training of the appropriate personnel is improved;
Voter registration irregularities should be minimized through transparency by electoral personnel, to prevent the creation of deliberate registration obstacles in areas suspected to be strongholds of political opponents. Efforts should also be made to prevent inadvertent registration errors;
Shortage of electoral materials may be overcome through adequate planning and improved logistics;
The publication of the results at the respective polling stations immediately after the declaration of the results should be rigidly implemented to ensure voter confidence in the transparency of the election;
Late announcement of the results should be overcome to reduce anxiety and suspicion. Improved communication and logistics appear the be the main solution to this problem.
The situation in Zanzibar today is a sensitive one and potentially dangerous. The government of Zanzibar, Telected by barely a majority of voters at best, will face a difficult task in ruling over a population that is divided, as reflected by the outcome of the Zanzibar elections. Especially in the case of Pemba where the ruling party CCM has not won a single seat in the Parliamentary elections. In a situation where the opposition has strongly questioned the outcome of the elections, and where the ruling party has ref'sed to cooperate with opposition CUF in a government of national unity, it is not unlikely that tensions will rise.
The discontent with the present stat's of the Union, felt by the entire population of Zanzibar, and by certain sectors of the Tanganyika population also, can only be addressed through a process of genuine consultation of the people, in line with their right to self-determination.
UNPO recognises that, considering the conditions after thirty years of one-party rule, considerable progress has already been made in the holding of the first multi-party elections. Nevertheless, tensions are high despite - and to some extent because of - these elections. Therefore measures must be adopted in order to install confidence in the government and the political process, and in order to reduce tensions and promote democracy and stability.
The better the relations between the distinct peoples or communities in a state, the more likely that each of them will see the benefits of association with the others in a framework that provides for their basic group needs.
Lasting associations between peoples and/or states can only be successful if they are formed voluntarily and on a basis of equality and mutual respect. The Union Declaration of 1964 does not meet these criteria, as it was not signed with the consent of the people. The repression by the Union government after the declaration, forced many Zanzibaris to flee to the mainland, where they were subsequently treated as second class citizens. In addition, large numbers of political opponents were deported to the mainland, where the same fate befell them.
It would seem that the proposal put forward for a modification of the Union governmental structure, in line with the original union treaty, is reasonable and makes sense. For there to be an equal union between Tanganyika and Zanzibar, the existence of two governments (those of Zanzibar and of Tanganyika) and of a federal Union government in which both partners participate is a good structure. With such a structure each of the federated states has jurisdiction and internal sovereignty over its own territory and delegates a number of governmental functions to the federal government. It is not the task of UNPO to prescribe this or any other solution. But UNPO does recommend that this proposal, supported by a large number of people, especially on Zanzibar, should be thoroughly examined and considered in a sincere dialogue among all political parties and leaders. Such a disc'ssion does, of course, not rule out the examination of other proposals put forward in good faith to improve the present state of affairs. Ultimately, any proposal for a modification of the states of the constituent parts of the Union and of their relations could usefully be decided upon by the people by means of an internationally monitored referendum or referenda.
In addition to the above, the following recommendations are made in an effort to contribute to a constructive dialogue on the future of the Union, and with the awareness of and understanding for the difficulties and limitations which the new multi-party Union is facing. To the Government and people of Zanzibar
There is an urgent need for the people of Zanzibar to reaffirm their commitment to non-violence and the democratic process, despite perceived setbacks. Unity, in this respect, is of crucial importance. The people of Zanzibar should not let themselves be divided along ethnic lines.
UNPO recommends that the Zanzibar government enter into dialogue with the opposition and with the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania in an effort to start a constructive disc'ssion on the state and stat's of the Union and its constituent parts and on raising the credibility of the political process.
The Government of Zanzibar can take initiatives for the creation of a favourable climate for a sustainable economic revival. This will include a stable political and social atmosphere, a stabilised currency, and control over the inflation. The economic and social infrastructure needs to be rebuilt to reactivate the necessary elements for economic revival.
To the international community
The international community should give due credit to and support non-violent and democratic movements if it wants to succeed in discouraging the use of force by oppressed people and opposition movements. The non-violent movement of the Zanzibaris for democracy and more self-determination, should be given due recognition by democratic governments elsewhere, especially by those of donor states. Governments and international organizations should enter into dialogue with representatives of the Government of Zanzibar and of the opposition directly.
The Zanzibar economy can be revitalized with the help of development funds allocated directly to Zanzibar. Donor states should insist on a fair distribution of their development funds for Tanzania to both Tanganyika and Zanzibar.
The international community should safeguard the democratization process that was started with the introduction of a multi-party system. Interested governments, the United Nations, the UNDP, the OAU, UNPO and NGOs should continue to closely monitor the human rights situation in Zanzibar and the political process there. Donor states should consider freezing certain development funds or taking other effective measures if there is credible evidence of a deterioration of the human rights situation in Zanzibar.
1.Zanzibar Election Monitoring Observer Group, an independent group of 140observers set up by the Zanzibar Legal Services Centre
2.For the full text of the article of the Union, see appendix 1
3.President, House of Representatives and Councillors for Zanzibar and President and House of Representatives for the United Republic of Tanzania
4.Wapemba: inhabitants of Pemba (Waunguja: people from Unguja).
5.National Electoral Commission
6.For an overview of the Union Parliament, see appendix 2
7.For a full copy of this letter, see appendix 3
8.Daily News (Tanzania), Thursday, October 26, 1995
9.The Express (Tanzania), Sunday edition, October 29-November 1, 1995, page 3
11.Harakati za Mabadiliko ya Kidemokrasia
12.Zanzibar Democratic Alternative
13.A full copy of the Zemog report is available from the UNPO Secretariat in The Hague.
14.The full text of the Statement by the General Secretary is available from the Secretariat
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Zanzibar election Diary Oct.19-27,1995
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