Tanzanian opposition leader Tundu Lissu on Saturday, November 7 said he had taken refuge at the German ambassador’s residence in Dar es Salaam after receiving death threats following a disputed election.
Lissu, who heads opposition party CHADEMA was the main challenger to President John Magufuli in the October 28 election, said that right after the vote he started getting death threats, and he entered the German residence on Monday.
“I received two unknown calls whose callers told me they will deal with me once and for all. I had to move from my home last Sunday to a friend’s home and then on Monday I went to the German (residence) seeking a temporary refuge for security reasons.
“Before entering the (residence), I was arrested and questioned temporarily before they released me,” Lissu said.
“We are (now) waiting for the embassy to negotiate with the government for us to leave (to go) abroad. I cannot leave in a normal way without security assurance.”
In Berlin, a German official said Lissu had been at the German ambassador’s residence.
He had no further information for the time being.
Police said there were no threats against Lissu and were unaware of him seeking refuge, adding that he had been provided with police security in the run-up to the elections.
Lissu was shot 16 times and serious wounded in 2017 in what remains an unsolved case.
He and other opposition leaders including CHADEMA chairman Freeman Mbowe and ACT-Wazalendo party leader Zitto Kabwe were briefly arrested this week after calling for demonstrations to demand a re-run of the election, saying it was riddled with fraud. They also want a new independent electoral commission.
Police said the demonstrations were illegal and were meant to cause violence.