Tanzania's former PM Sumaye rejoins ruling party after stint in opposition

Monday February 10 2020

 

By The Citizen Reporter @TheCitizenTZ news@tz.nationmedia.com

Dar es Salaam. Almost two months since he ditched the opposition party Chadema, former Prime Minister Fredrick Sumaye has returned to the ruling party.

Mr Sumaye, who held the position of Prime Minister for the entire ten-year period of former President Benjamin Mkapa’s presidency, officially rejoined the ruling CCM on Monday, February 10, 2020.

He officially announced his return to the ruling party in front of the party's Secretary General Dr Bashiru Ally during a meeting of the CCM's (the ruling party) board of trustees in Dar es Salaam.

Mr Sumaye decamped to the opposition Chadema after he unsuccessfully vied to run for the presidency on the ruling party’s ticket in 2015.

In December last year (2019), he ditched the opposition party after his bid to retain his seat as the party’s Coastal Zone chairman flopped.

Mr Sumaye told reporters in Dar es Salaam on December 4, 2019 that he had no intention of joining any other political party following his decision to quit the main opposition party.

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His bid to retain his post flopped after 48 party members voted against him. He alleged that he became a victim after his decision to collect forms to vie for the party’s national chairmanship.

“The problem started when I took forms to vie for the party’s national chairmanship. I believed I was exercising my constitutional right but some of the party members took it differently,” said Mr Sumaye.

He added: “My intention was to erase the notion that the seat (chairmanship) is reserved for certain individuals but I wasn’t understood.”

For that, Mr Sumaye said he has been forced to quit the party but he insisted that he wouldn’t join another political party.

The former Premier insisted initially he quit the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) for the main opposition in order to strengthen democracy.

He said he believed that by having a strong opposition voters will have wide range of candidates to select from.