The top organ of Tanzania’s ruling party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi, has nominated Dr Tulia Ackson as Speaker of the National Assembly following the resignation of Job Ndugai on January 6, 2022.
The CCM Central Committee said the nomination of Dr Ackson, who is currently the deputy speaker, will be tabled in Parliament for a vote to replace Mr Ndugai who quit after a public altercation with President Samia Suluhu Hassan.
In a press conference in Dodoma on Thursday, CCM’s Ideology and Publicity Secretary Shaka Hamdu Shaka said that the Central Committee had settled on Dr Ackson out of 70 applicants.
“From Friday January 21 to 30 CCM MPs will vote for a candidate to be elected as next Speaker of the National Assembly,” he said.
As is tradition, CCM, Tanzania’s majority party, had to nominate a name before it is tabled on the floor of the House for approval. The next step will be a formality, owing to the party’s large numbers in the House.
The election of Speaker will be the first order of business when Parliament resumes its next session in Dodoma in February.
She will replace Mr Ndugai who had been backing the Executive before he suddenly began criticising the government for binge borrowing.
Once approved, Dr Ackson, will face a litmus test on loyalty to the party, as well as the government.
Shortly after Mr Ndugai’s resignation, President Suluhu also made minor changes to her cabinet, dropping some names in what was seen as a purge on those perceived to be ‘enemies’ of her administration.
Dr Ackson faced tough competition for the party's nomination from former Pan-African Parliament vice-president Stephen Masele, former Attorney-General Andrew Chenge, and former CCM Women's Wing chair-person Sophia Simba, in the February 1 poll.
Others who picked forms at the ruling party’s Dodoma and Lumumba offices included Esther Makazi, Mohamed Mmanga, Ndurumah Majembe, Godwin Maimu and Johnson Japheth.
The list also included: Ezekiel Maige, Emmanuel Mng’arwe, Azizi Mussa, Onyango Otieno, Dotto Mgasa, Prof Edson Lubua, Fikiria Said, Dr Itikija Mwanga, Peter Njemu, Mariam Koja, Joseph Anania, Samuel Xsaday, Ar-nold Peter and Joseph Sabuka.
Others were Mussa Azzan Zungu, Goodluck Ole Medeye, Joseph Msukuma, Merkion Ndosi, Godwin Kunambi, Ambwene Kajula, Rahim Rashid Ismail, Alex Mwita, Semistocles Rwegasira pamoja, Gragrey Nyalohala, Simon Ngatunga, Tumsifu Mwasamale, Zahoro Hanuna, George Nangale, Barua Mwakilanga and Patrick Lubano.