Tanzania’s opposition presidential candidate in the just-concluded contentious election, Tundu Lissu, is currently holed up at the German embassy in Dar es Salaam.
Lissu, who was vying on a Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) ticket, has been seeking refuge at the German ambassador’s residence since Monday, November 2 after claiming that his life is in danger.
Lissu was briefly arrested by Tanzanian police in Dar es Salaam on Monday and subjected to a more than 2-hour questioning. Reports say that embassy officials then drove to the station before leaving with Lissu.
According to The East African, diplomatic negotiations are going on to have him allowed to leave the country and seek asylum in Belgium where he holds a residency permit.
The firebrand opposition politician survived an assassination attempt on September 7, 2017, when gunmen shot at his car several times in the administrative capital, Dodoma.
Lissu underwent over 20 operations first at Kenya’s Nairobi Hospital then later in Belgium for him to recover.
The 52-year-old lawyer was accorded a heroic welcome by his supporters when he was returning from Belgium in July 2020 in his bid to try and unseat Chama cha Mapinduzi’s (CCM) John Pombe Magufuli.
Magufuli pledges to work for all Tanzanians
Meanwhile, during his swearing-in ceremony in a packed-to-the-brim Jamhuri Grounds in Dodoma on Thursday, November 5, President Magufuli promised to work for all Tanzanians, both his supporters and opposition loyals.
Being the first Tanzanian president to be sworn in in Dodoma, Magufuli also promised to build an international standard stadium in the administrative capital. Until 2020, the ceremony had been held in Dar es Salaam.