NIMD worked in Tanzania from 2002 to 2012. During that time, Tanzania’s political scene was relatively stable. The ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM – Party of the Revolution), had been in power since the nation’s independence, and it continued to dominate the political sphere. On Zanzibar, opposition party Civic United Front (CUF) retained a significant following but it lacked the political clout of the CCM.
Tanzania also had a stable economy and the transparency of public finances had slightly improved. The country had also been commended for its gender-friendly policies, with 30% female MPs and significant female representation in President Kikwete’s cabinet.
However, the 40-year old union between Tanganyika (mainland) and Zanzibar, which together constitute the Republic of Tanzania, continued to be a difficult issue in need of legal and constitutional reforms.
NIMD’s programme in Tanzania
NIMD became active in Tanzania in 2006, joining forces with the Tanzania Centre for Democracy (TCD). Together, NIMD and TCD established objectives for the programme in Tanzania, which were to:
- Strengthen multiparty cooperation
- Deepen regional and international involvement by political parties
- Increase role of politics at the local level
- Improve accountability of political parties
- Strengthen youth capacities
- Improve inter-party debate
- Develop a national democratic governance agenda
Our joint strategic plan with TCD was implemented between 2007 and 2010. By the end of this programme, the Tanzanian government made a pledge to find a way to support TCD, which is a fundamental step in ensuring the durability of the programme. NIMD also achieved the inclusion of non-parliamentary parties in the TCD Board, which enhances the profile of TCD as an inclusive forum.
NIMD’s programme in Tanzania was terminated because funding was discontinued. In 2013, NIMD assisted in the transition of handing over the programme to the Danish Institute for Parties and Democracy (DIPD), one of NIMD’s sister organizations. We actively made sure that we could secure continuity and sustainability for TCD, as we always consider TCD to be a valuable partner in the region. Even though our long-running programme in Tanzania ended in 2012, our TCD partnership never did.