A NEW study released recently has recommended revision of the Political Parties Act to make imperative involvement of women, youth and people with disabilities in leadership positions within political parties.
Presenting the findings of the study, Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic) with the University of Dodoma (UDOM), Prof Alexander Makulilo said the amendments should set a number of people for each group to be involved in every process of all political parties in the country.
“Although political parties, through their policies and constitution, believe in inclusiveness, they have not achieved this,” he said.
He added, “Political parties have not absorbed these important groups in leadership,” He said the research on inclusion of women, youth and people with disabilities in nominating candidates for 2020 elections discovered that no political party seemed to have clear policies or guidelines on increasing the participation and representation of people with disabilities in leadership positions in the country.
The Act passed in 1992 when Tanzania adopted multiparty politics, has already been amended seven times since its enactment, to strengthen multi-party democracy in the country.
Prof Makulilo said the study recommends a need to collect and compile a database containing specific information on political party membership, participation, representation and influence within party decision-making bodies as required by the law on political parties.
The Researcher said it’s crucial for political parties to plan and carry out policies and guidelines aimed at bringing about participation of persons with disabilities in decisionmaking bodies within parties by establishing a special body within the party for this group as with other groups.
They conducted the study from December 2020 - April 2021 to evaluate the participation of women, youth and people with disabilities in nominating candidates for the 2020 general elections within political parties.
The Tanzania Centre for Democracy (TCD) conducted the research supported by the National Democratic Institute (NDI) Tanzania through its USAID-funded Consortium for Elections and Political Process Strengthening (CEPPS) programme. NDI worked in collaboration with office of the Registrar of Political Parties.