By Own Correspondent – The National Electoral Commission (NEC) has postponed parliamentary elections in seven constituencies and 23 wards.Election has been postponed in four Zanzibar constituencies to November 14, following the discovery of faulty ballot papers.
NEC also announced the postponement of elections in the three Mainland constituencies of Mpanda Urban, Mpanda Rural and Nkenge for shortage of ballot papers.
According to a statement released by NEC’s election director, Mr Rajabu Kiravu, the constituencies involved in Zanzibar include Mwanakwerekwe, Mtoni, Magogoni, all located in Unguja, and Wete in Pemba.
Mr Kiravu said that in some constituencies like Wete, the names of some of the candidates were missing from the ballot papers.
“In Wete, the name of the Tanzania Labour Party candidate was missing and as a result, under section 46 (40) of the Election Act, we were forced to postpone the voting process,” Mr Kiravu said.
However, Mr Kiravu added that the decision didn’t affect the civic and presidential elections in those constituencies.
Voting was also suspected in 23 wards in Tanzania Mainland for various reasons, including shortage of ballot papers.
Mr Kiravu named the affected wards as Matonya in Newala, Endegikot in Mbulu, Mbede in Mpanda and Kisiwani in Same. Others are Gongo la Mboto in Ilala, Mji Mwema in Njombe, Kigwa and Ibelamikundi in Uyui, Msogezi in Ulanga, Kimuli and Kamuli in Karagwe.
Other affected wards are Kisanga in Sikonge, Mkuyuni and Mirongi in Mwanza, Kitagata in Kasulu, Buseresere in Chato and Mazinga in Muleba.
Kiravu also named Kilangalanga in Kibaha, and Kibiti, Chemchem, Ngorongo, Kipungira and Mjawa in Rufiji, as the others others making the list of affected wards.
In Zanzibar, the Zanzibar electoral commission (ZEC) said yesterday it had suspended elections in four wards in Mjini Magharibi due to irregularities in ballot papers.
The ZEC chairman, Mr Khatib Mwinyichande, told a news conference at Bwawani Hotel that the irregularities were observed in the last minutes of preparations.
The ZEC director of elections, Mr Salim Kassim Ali, named the wards as Mchangani at Mji Mkongwe Constituency, Kwahani Ward at Kwahani Constituency, Miembeni Ward at Kikwajuni Constituency and Nyerere Ward at Magomeni Constituency.
“We have received reports indicating that there are printing anomalies in ballot papers that were delivered in the four wards,” said Mr Ali.