Zanzibar: 1957 Election
Updated 7 September 2010
Extracted from: "Zanzibar" IN Compendium of Elections in Southern Africa (2002), edited by Tom Lodge, Denis Kadima and David Pottie, EISA, 409.
The very first elections in Zanzibar took place in July 1957. The election was contested by political parties, ethnical associations and religions organisations. It became a contest between the Afro-Shirazi Party [ASP] and the Zanzibar Nationalist Party [ZNP]. The election aroused a lot of sensations in the country and most of the people who registered themselves as voters did vote. The ASP won the election overwhelmingly snatching five out of six contested seats. The sixth seat went to the Indian dominated Muslim Association. This was a humiliating defeat for the ZNP.
In 1960 the British Government appointed Sir Hillary Blood as constitutional commissioner to advise the British Government on all issues pertaining to constitutional development in Zanzibar. The commissioner made some remarkable proposals that include the creation of ministerial portfolios. He further suggested that the leader of any party that wins the majority seats in the legislative council should become the country's Chief Minister.
Other recommendations were that the Legislative Council should have twenty two elected representatives, electoral constituencies should be demarcated, women should have the right to vote and electoral qualifications such as such as possession of property or the achievement of a certain level education should be abolished. Following the acceptance of these recommendations by the British Government the election date was set for January 1961.
|Registered Voters||39 873|
|Total votes||35 980|
|Valid votes||35 361|
|% Spoilt votes||1.72|
Fengler 1999, 879.
Note: According to Nunley (2006) the seat won by "Others" went to the Muslim Association.
|Afro-Shirazi Party (ASP)||21 632||61.17||5|
|Zanzibar Nationalist Party (ZNP)||7 761||21.95||0|
Fengler 1999, 879, 882.
FENGLER, W 1999 "Kenya" IN Nohlen, D, Krennerich, M & Thibaut, B (eds) Elections in Africa: A Data Handbook, Oxford Publishers.
NUNLEY, AC 2006 "Elections in Tanzania" IN African Elections Database, [www] http://africanelections.tripod.com/tz.html [opens new window] (accessed 7 Sep 2010).