Tanzanian opposition leader Tundu Lissu aims to return home from exile

The Tanzanian opposition leader and former presidential candidate Tundu Lissu says he plans to return home this month from exile in Europe, after the government lifted a ban on political rallies.

The ban, imposed by former president, John Magufuli in 2016, allowed only elected politicians to conduct rallies in their constituencies.

Lissu, a former politician, left the country for treatment abroad after he was shot 16 times by an unknown gunmen in September 2017.

He returned for a few months in 2020 to challenge Magufuli in a presidential election and took 13 percent of the votes, but his CHADEMA party rejected the outcome over claims of widespread irregularities.

President Samia Suluhu Hassan lifted the six-and-a-half-year ban on political rallies last week as part of her reconciliation strategy after taking over the presidency in March 2021 following the death of Magufuli.

Hassan has also lifted a ban on four newspapers.