Supporting Tanzania’'s election process

02 Nov 2010

Tanzania and Zanzibar’s presidential elections took place on October 31. Parliamentary polls were also held, with 239 legislators set to be elected. UNDP successfully helped to register up to 20 million Tanzanians for the elections, in partnership with the two election managment bodies in Tanzania (the National Election Commission, NEC and the Zanzibar Election Commission, ZEC).

The organization provided voter registration equipment, technical support and training through a $28 million multi-donor trust fund project launched in June 2009. In an effort to reach remote areas and women the latter has also helped to educate voters via small grants to local NGOs.

Innovative methods have been used to reach and motivate potential voters, including theatre groups, rural community radio, and voter information in Braille for the blind. In support of NEC and ZEC the project has also helped put in place a mobile phone sms sytem for easy voter information on election day and a modernized results information system for the secure transfer of vote counting results.

The UNDP project trained judges on handling election complaints, security forces on human rights, as well as media on ethical reporting. Working with all political parties, UNDP also helped provide training for women candidates.

Building on the historic political agreement in Zanzibar in late 2009, the project also assisted ZEC with the July 2010 Zanzibar referendum and has worked with community and religious groups to address community conflict prevention during election time.