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National Assembly of Tanzania

National Assembly of Tanzania

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The National Assembly of Tanzania
Tanzania
The United Republic of Tanzania is a country in East Africa bordered by Kenya and Uganda to the north, Rwanda, Burundi, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west, and Zambia, Malawi, and Mozambique to the south. The country's eastern borders lie on the Indian Ocean.Tanzania is a state...

 and the President
President of Tanzania
The President of the United Republic of Tanzania is the head of state and head of government of Tanzania. The president leads the executive branch of the Government of Tanzania and is the commander-in-chief of the Tanzania People's Defence Force....

 of the United Republic make up the Parliament of Tanzania. The current Speaker of the National Assembly is Hon. Anna Makinda, who presides over an assembly of 357 members.

History


The National Assembly of Tanzania was formed as the Legislative Council of Tanzania Mainland – then known as Tanganyika
Tanganyika
Tanganyika , later formally the Republic of Tanganyika, was a sovereign state in East Africa from 1961 to 1964. It was situated between the Indian Ocean and the African Great Lakes of Lake Victoria, Lake Malawi and Lake Tanganyika...

 – in 1926. The Council was formed under a law enacted by the British Parliament called the Tanganyika Legislative Council Order and Council. The law was gazetted in Tanganyika on 18th June 1926. The Council consisted of 20 members when it was formed on the 7th of December 1926 under the Chairmanship of the Governor of Tanganyika, Sir Donald Cameron.

The first Speaker was appointed to replace the Governor as the Chairman of the Council in 1953. The office of Speaker was first occupied on the 1st of November, 1953.

In 1958, the Council got a few elected representatives for the first time. This was the first election allowed in the colony. Of the three political parties which participated in the elections, namely Tanganyika African Union (TANU), United Tanganyika Party (UTP) and African National Congress (ANC), only TANU won in some constituencies, thus becoming the first party to have elected members on the Council.

Second elections for positions on the Council were held in 1960. These elections were part of the preparations being made to make Tanganyika an independent nation. All members appointed by the Governor were abolished and the people of Tanganyika were allowed to elect all members of the Council.

In the same year, the name of the Council was changed to Legislative Assembly. The changes made in this year were constitutionally necessary so as to allow the President of Tanganyika to accent all laws passed instead of the Queen of England.

Mandate


The Parliament – the National Assembly and the President of the United Republic - obtains its mandate and functions from Chapter 3 of the Constitution
Constitution of Tanzania
The Constitution of Tanzania, formally Constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania and also known as Permanent Constitution or Fourth Constitution of Tanzania, was ratified in 1977...

 of United Republic of Tanzania. The Constitution contains Articles that grant for the establishment, composition and functions of the Parliament.

Functions


The Parliament has powers to deal with both Union and non-Union issues which are not in the scope of the Zanzibar
Zanzibar
Zanzibar ,Persian: زنگبار, from suffix bār: "coast" and Zangi: "bruin" ; is a semi-autonomous part of Tanzania, in East Africa. It comprises the Zanzibar Archipelago in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of the mainland, and consists of numerous small islands and two large ones: Unguja , and Pemba...

 Government. It is responsible for discussing bills and passing laws. It also scrutinizes the actions of the Executive arm of the Government.

Structure


Article 66 of the Constitution of Tanzania outlines the following categories of members:

1. Members elected to represent constituencies;


2. Women members whose number shall increase progressively starting with twenty per cent of the members named in sub-paragraphs (1), (3) and (4) of this paragraph, to be elected by the political parties that are represented in the National assembly in terms of Article 78 of the Constitution and on the basis of proportional representation amongst those parties;


3. Five members elected by the Zanzibar House of Representatives
House of Representatives of Zanzibar
The unicameral House of Representatives of Zanzibar is the semi-autonomous island's legislative body.The current House of Representatives, formed following elections held on 30 October 2005, has a total of 81 members. 50 members are directly elected in single-member constituencies using the simple...

 from among its members;


4. The Attorney General;


5. Not more than ten members appointed by the President.


After the 2010 elections
Tanzanian general election, 2010
Presidential and parliamentary elections were held in Tanzania on 31 October 2010. President Jakaya Kikwete of the Chama Cha Mapinduzi ran for his second term, with Willibrod Slaa of the Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo as the main opposition contender....

, a total of 357 members made up the National Assembly. Of the 357 members, 239 were elected from constituencies. The special seats for women totalled 102, while the Zanzibar House of Representatives elected five members to represent it in the Parliament. The remainder of the membership was made up by the Attorney General and ten appointments by the President.

The current Speaker is Hon. Anna Makinda, the first female speaker in the Assembly’s history.