TANZANIA has received global approval in democratic related issues, emerging one of the strongest democracies in East Africa.
According to the Freedom in the World Index, which was released last Friday, Tanzania scored 45 points out of the possible 100, the second, behind Kenya in the sound political environment ranking. Kenya scored 48 points in the ‘Freedom House’ released index.
The findings show that Tanzania excelled in the area of political rights, with the report describing the 2015 General Elections as free and fair.
“Observers considered the elections as credible, with the European Union (EU) describing it as highly competitive, generally well-organised,” reads part of the index.
It further indicates that Tanzanian voters and politicians are mostly free of undue influence from groups that are not democratically accountable.
The index shows that various segments of the population, including the ethnic, religious, gender and other relevant groups enjoy full political rights and electoral opportunities.
“Members of the cultural, ethnic, religious and other minority groups ostensibly have full political rights,” asserts the index.
The constitution of Tanzania provides for women to make up at least 30 per cent of representatives in the parliament. As of 2018, women occupied 37 per cent of all seats in the legislative house.
According to the findings, freedom of religion is generally respected in the East Africa nation, with interfaith relations termed as “largely peaceful,” though periodic sectarian violence has occurred.
The index asserts that there is freedom for trade unions for the Trade Union Congress of Tanzania and Zanzibar Trade Union Congress coordinated workers’ groupings are nominally independent of the government.
Uganda is ranked third in the East African region, with 36 points ahead of Rwanda, which comes fourth with 23 points.
Marred with political crisis since April 2015, Burundi is the fifth with 14 points while the region’s youngest nation— South Sudan tails the region with only two points out of 100.
Freedom in the World Index has recorded global declines in political rights and civil liberties for an alarming 13 consecutive years, from 2005 to 2018.
The global average score has declined each year and countries with net score declines have consistently outnumbered those with net improvements.