Thursday, December 14, 2017

Chadema says bye to Longido repeat polls


By Filbert Rweyemamu @TheCitizenTz

Arusha. It's now official. Chadema will boycott the January 13th Parliamentary elections in Longido.

The district party chairman Alais Meing'arana insisted yesterday that the current political temperature in the constituency was not conducive for the polls.

He told reporters Chadema was still surprised by the decision by the National Electoral Commission (NEC) to hold the by-elections when there was a pending case in court regarding who was eligible for the contest.

He said an appeal filed by the opposition party's former MP Onesmo Ole Nangole challenging nullification of his victory during the 2015 General Election has not been determined.

NEC announced recently that  by elections would be held in on January 13th in three parliamentary constituencies which fell vacant due to a petition, defection and death of sitting MPs.

These included Singida North seat, once held by Lazaro Nyalandu (by then in CCM), Longido (vacant since June 2016) and Songea Urban following the death of Leonidas Gama (CCM).

Kinondoni parliamentary seat also fell vacant from the weekend after the resignation of the MP Maulid Mtulya (CUF). By-elections would also be held for councillors in various parts of the country next month.

But the Chadema official in Longido said his party believed there would be no guarantee of tranquility during the January 13th polls in the constituency as was the case during the recent civil polls in Arumeru district.

On his part, the Longido district Chadema secretary Mathayo Nyikin insisted that his party was not worried by the coming by election in his constituency but only wanted fair play.

Recently the opposition Chadema party in Arusha region  called on NEC to postpone the repeat poll in  Longido slated for next month until a later date.

The secretary for the party in the northern zone regions Amani Golugwa  said  there was a pending appeal before the court by the former Longido MP (Chadema) Nangole who challenged nullification of his victory in the 2015 General Election.

The Longido parliamentary seat fell vacant on June last year when the High Court nullified the election of Mr. Nangole during the October 25th, 2015 General Election.

This followed a petition filed by the Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) candidate Steven Kiruswa who cited various irregularities on the polling day blamed on the Chadema candidate.

Mr Golugwa said an appeal lodged by Mr. Nangole before the Court of Appeal challenging nullification of his election by the HIgh Court was yet to be determined.

"NEC should not organize any poll in Longido. We want the Court of Appeal to first determine the appeal by Mr. Nangole so that justice is done to him", he said.

He added that the opposition party has already notified the Registrar of the Court of Appeal and NEC director that Chadema was not ready to field a candidate in next month's polls until Mr. Nangole's appeal is heard.