Today Robert Amsterdam has issued the following open letter to Winston Charles, the Director of the National Electoral Commission (NEC) of Tanzania, on behalf of his client the presidential candidate Tundu Lissu.
The letter states: “We write to express our growing concern about the National Electoral Commission’s (“NEC”) systematic disqualification of opposition candidates, particularly members of the CHADEMA party, in the October 2020 general elections. We are deeply troubled by the National Electoral Commission’s disqualification of these candidates in breach of the National Elections Act and international human rights law.”
Amsterdam’s letter continues: “It has come to our attention that 1,020 CHADEMA candidates for chancellorships were disqualified by the National Electoral Commission out of 3,574 CHADEMA potential candidates. This represents an appalling disqualification rate of 28.5%. So too, the Commission has disqualified 53 CHADEMA candidates for Parliament out of 244 nominees, a 21.7% disqualification rate. These troubling disqualifications are not just limited to CHADEMA candidates and include other opposition parties as well. We note that 47 ACT-Wazalendo candidates were also disqualified. In contrast, the vast majority of governing party Chama Cha Mapinduzi (“CCM”) candidates were approved. The shocking disparity of treatment in the approval of CCM and opposition candidates is blatant and deeply problematic.”
Download the full copy of the open letter here or read below.