Tanzania's president and National Assembly members are elected oncurrently by direct popular vote for 5-year terms. The president appoints a prime minister who serves as the government's leader in the National Assembly. The president also selects his cabinet from among National Assembly members. Elections for president and all National Assembly seats will be held in October 2000.
The unicameral National Assembly elected in 1995 has 275 members, 232 of whom are from the mainland and Zanzibar. There are 37 appointed seats for women, and each political party receives a proportion of appointed seats commensurate with the number of constituency seats won. Also, five members are elected by the Zanzibar House of Representatives to participate in the National Assembly. At present, the ruling CCM holds about 80% of the seats in the Assembly. Laws passed by the National Assembly are valid for Zanzibar only in specifically designated union matters.
Zanzibar's House of Representatives has jurisdiction over all nonunion matters. There are currently 76 members in the House of Representatives in Zanzibar, including 50 elected by the people, 10 appointed by the president of Zanzibar, 5 exofficio members, 10 women appointed by political parties commensurate with constituency seats won, and an attorney general appointed by the president. Zanzibar's House of Representatives can make laws for Zanzibar without the approval of the union government. The terms of office for Zanzibar's president and House of Representatives also are 5 years. The semiautonomous relationship between Zanzibar and the union is a relatively unique system of government.
For administrative purposes, Tanzania is divided into 25 regions--20 on the mainland, 3 on Zanzibar, and 2 on Pemba. Ninety-nine district councils have been to further increase local authority. Of the 99 councils operating in 86 districts,19 are urban and 80 are rural. The 19 urban units are classified further as city (Dar es Salaam), municipal (Arusha, Dodoma, Tanga), and town councils (the remaining 15 communities).
Source: U.S. Department of State