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Preliminary Results Indicate Victory for Ruling Party in Tanzania


Preliminary results in Tanzania's elections indicate a victory for the ruling party.

The chairman of Tanzania's National Electoral Commission, Lewis Makame, read to reporters Thursday the presidential and parliamentary results of voting in the urban Iringa constituency.

Foreign Minister Jakaya Kikwete of the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi captured 27,925 votes, or almost 85 percent of the vote in that constituency.

The candidate for the Civic United Front, Ibrahim Lipumba, came a distant third, with 683 votes, or two percent of the votes.

The ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi also received the majority of votes on the parliamentary ticket.

Mr. Kikwete was one of 10 candidates for president in Wednesday's presidential and parliamentary elections.

Although 18 political parties contested parliamentary seats, the main race was between the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi and the Civic United Front.

Tanzania's elections were originally to be held at the end of October, but were postponed on the mainland following the death of an opposition vice presidential candidate.

In the semi-autonomous islands of Zanzibar, local elections went ahead in October in a vote marred by allegations of fraud. During those polls, which the ruling CCM won, police beat up, and fired teargas on opposition supporters. There were also reports of violence during the national elections that were held on the islands this week.

Chama Cha Mapinduzi and its predecessors have ruled Tanzania for more than 40 years.

There has been much friction between the ruling party and the opposition Civic United Front, especially in Zanzibar.

Following the 1995 and 2000 elections, the parties accused each other of manipulating results and intimidating voters.

About 16 million people are registered to vote in Tanzania.

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