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Friday, April 15, 2016

Tuju denies he was arrested in Tanzania over poll irregularities

Former minister Raphael Tuju.

Former Foreign Affairs minister Raphael Tuju has denied he was arrested and detained in Tanzania over election malpractices.

The alleged rigging was said to have been in favour of Edward Lowassa of Chadema party. President John Magufuli of Chama Cha Mapinduzi won the elections by 58.5 per cent. Lowassa came second with 39 per cent.

Tuju termed the allegations “idle talk”, which should be treated as rumours and cheap propaganda. “I was not arrested or detained,” he said.

“Do you think a former Foreign Affairs minister could be arrested and detained in the neighbouring country without raising issues or not being known?” Tuju added. He also served as retired President Mwai Kibaki’s adviser on ethnic and media relations.

Tuju has not been in the limelight for a long time. Residents, especially his supporters, questioning his whereabouts. This led widespread speculations in the country that Tuju is among other government officials allegedly detained in Tanzania for poll malpractices.

Tuju spoke to the press in Kisumu town.

The residents wanted him to clear the rumours that he was arrested and detained.

“Those claims are not true,” he told the public on his way to visit his mother in Rarieda.

On politics, he was reluctant to confirm whether he will be vying for any political position. “The only thing I can categorically confirm is that I am not vying for the presidential seat in the 2017 general election,” Tuju said.

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