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Tanzania’s president shows up at opposition event

Samia Suluhu Hassan

For the first time in Tanzania’s history, the president has attended an International Women’s Day event organized by the main opposition party, Chadema.

President Samia Suluhu Hassan’s presence was welcomed by Chadema chairman Freeman Mbowe, who said it was the fruit of meetings aimed at achieving reconciliation.

Ms Samia, who addressed thousands in the meeting, said that reconciliation was ongoing in Tanzanian politics, and that some steps had already been taken meanwhile others were in progress, including the finding of a new constitution.

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In her address, President Samia added it had been difficult to start the reconciliation process as some in her ruling party “were not ready”.

“There was a lot of debates here and there, and the same appeared to the country’s opposition. So both parties have some of its people who are not happy with the step of political reconciliation,” Ms Samia added.

She is Tanzania’s first female president, having taken office following the death of John Magufuli in 2021.

Mr Magufuli was accused by the opposition of being authoritarian, and cracking down on its leaders and members.

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