Tanzanian President-elect John Magufuli says he will soon institute government reforms, warning corrupt public officials that they will lose their jobs if they don’t change their ways under his administration.
The National Elections Commission of Tanzania officially presented Magufuli with a victory certificate Friday after he was declared the winner of the October 25 presidential election. He garnered 58.46 percent of the vote. Main challenger Edward Lowassa of the opposition UKAWA coalition came in second with 39 percent.
Nape Nnauye, spokesman for the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party, said the newly elected president would establish a special tribunal to address issues of public corruption. This, he said, stems from Magufuli’s pledge to Tanzanians in the run-up to the presidential, parliamentary and local elections. He said Magufuli vowed to make changes following complaints from citizens that the government has been lethargic in addressing their concerns.
"It is from the election manifesto of the party, but also it is his mission to reform the government and change the way the government is working to make sure the government is effective, the government is delivering, reduce bureaucracy and change how the technocrats [behave] in their offices,” Nnauye said.
During campaign, the UKAWA coalition and CCM traded accusations of corruption. Opposition supporters said the CCM, which has been in power since the country gained independence, has been infective at rooting out corruption in public institutions.
Nnauye admitted that the decision-making process sometimes delays prosecution in cases of alleged corruption.
"A case concerning corruption takes too long to be decided, so the president-elect has promised Tanzanians that he will form a special tribunal to deal with this one so that we can speed up the cases concerning misuse of public funds, misuse of public offices, so that we can reduce the problem in the country,” Nnauye said.
Opposition parties, however, said that the ruling party is to blame for the existing corruption. Nnauye dismissed the accusations as without merit, saying he was not surprised by the criticism.
“We have laid down the foundations for the growth of the economy of this country. ... The president-elect has said we are going to translate the growth of the economy from the papers to the real life of the people in the street, to make their life easy, and to improve social services," Nnauye said.
He also said the recent election was a wake-up call for the ruling party to do more to address difficulties the country faces following the stiff challenge the opposition posed during the vote.