Tanzania to go digital for 2015 elections

Plans are underway to introduce the use of biometric electoral system in Tanzania's 2015 General Election, Tanzania's National Electoral Commission (NEC) said on Monday.

NEC chairman Damian Lubuva said the decision to use the digital system has been taken by the government to make the voting process more secure and boost confidence in the accuracy of the results.

"Yes, we intend to introduce the biometric electoral system," Lubuva said, when speaking at a news conference to welcome 17 delegates from the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission (ZEC) who are in Tanzania to exchange experiences on the electoral process.

Kenya's Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) introduced the system during elections held on March 4, but the system was replete with technical glitches.

Biometric technology can be used to store unique physical characteristics including fingerprints and facial scans of voters in a database for identification.

Lubuva said the commission is planning to float tenders for the acquisition of the biometric electoral system, adding that its value is yet to be established.

He said NEC also planned to invite donors to fund the procurement and installation of the whole system.

The chairman brushed aside reports that the commission was not transparent in the whole process of acquiring the system.

"The whole decision was made by the government, as a result there is no need of hiding the process from the public, everything will be known after we complete the whole tendering procedure," said Lubuva.