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Tanzanian government to cut donor dependence to three per cent

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- The government of Tanzania said on Monday it intended to cut donor dependence to 3 percent in the next national budget from 6.4 percent in the current budget.

The east African country’s Minister for Finance and Planning, Phillip Mpango, told Parliament that increasing domestic tax revenue by 15 percent, borrowing commercially, cutting wasteful spending and reviewing tax exemptions should compensate for the reduced donor funding.

Tabling the budget framework for 2016/17, Mpango said plans were afoot to prepare an 11.5 billion USD budget in the next financial year which will be slightly higher than the 11.2 billion USD budget in the current financial year.

The framework tabled by the minister in Parliament in Dodoma will be debated by Members of Parliament till Friday and expectations were that their recommendations will be taken into account to improve the framework.

The government will also review all tax exemption contracts with a view of establishing its benefits, said the minister.

"All government institutions will be required to use electronic payment system in revenue collection so as to control revenue loss," he added.

"Even contractors, tenderers and service providers will be required to use electronic payment system if they want to work with the government," he said.


Leading Zanzibar opposition party to boycott re-run polls

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Zanzibar’s leading opposition party said on Thursday it will boycott the March 20 re-run of the disputed general election, a move likely to deepen the political stand-off in the east African archipelago.

Civic United Front (CUF) said it will not participate in the re-run elections because they were illegal and a defilement of democracy as well as disrespect to the decisions made by the people in the October polls.

Twaha Taslima, CUF’s Acting Chairman, told a news conference in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam that Zanzibaris had already expressed their democratic rights of choosing the leader they wanted in the October election.

CUF’s top decision making organ-the governing council-has been holding a closed-door meeting in Dar es Salaam for two days and came up with 12 resolutions which were declared the party’s position since the announcement of the date of the re-run polls by the Zanzibar Electoral Commission (ZEC) chairman Jecha Salum Jecha last week.

Jecha announced that fresh elections in the Zanzibar archipelago will be held on March 20.

The re-election of the President, members of the House of Representatives and civic leaders follows the surprise annulment of the October 25 results by the ZEC Chairman, three days into counting and announcing of the outcome of the vote.

On October 28, 2015, the ZEC’s boss cancelled the Isles election results, saying the polls were marred with irregularities.

CUF Secretary General Seif Sharrif Hamad who was vying for the Zanzibar presidency announced that he was the winner after beating his rival-the ruling CCM’s Zanzibar President Ali Mohamed Shein.

Following the announcement by ZEC to nullify the elections, the international community has appealed to ZEC to resume and complete the tallying and announcement of vote results swiftly.

Zanzibar to hold presidential vote on March 20

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzania’s Zanzibar election commission (ZEC) announced Friday the re-run of Zanzibar election will be held on March 20.

In a statement issued at ZEC office in Zanzibar, ZEC chairman Jecha Salim Jecha said the election would involve president of Zanzibar, members of the House of Representatives and ward councilors.

The election would also involve all political parties who formally took part in the last election, and would have no election campaigns, Jecha explained

He said all aspirants who were formally elected by the parties would continue to be contestants in the re-run election.

He called on the public to continue maintaining prevailing peace, harmony and solidarity during election period.

ZEC annulled the results of the election held last October after discovering it involved a number of irregularities.



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