Tanzania Government and Politics

Following the constitution of 1977 is Tanzania a united republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar (According to AllCityCodes.com, Zanzibar also has its own constitution from 1985). The supreme executive is appointed a president, elected together with a vice president in general elections for five years; he can be re-elected once. The president heads the government and is also military commander. The government is nominated by the President among the members of the National Assembly. Legislative authority has been added to the National Assembly, elected for five years. It has 232 directly elected members and 42 nominated members (37 women representatives, five representatives of Zanzibar House of Representatives). The Assembly adopts laws for the entire country and for Tanganyika. Laws that only apply to Zanzibar are passed by the island’s House of Representatives. Zanzibar executive has been added to a president-elect for five years. He appoints a prime minister, and together they designate the rest of the government. The legislative authority resides with the House of Representatives, with 75 members; 50 elected officials, five seats for regional commissioners, 10 for presidential members and 10 for women.

The tension between the Muslim-dominated Zanzibar and the religious pluralist (Christian groups constitute a majority) Tanganyika has a destabilizing effect on the regime. The two states have, in part, functioned separately, although Zanzibar politicians are now more actively involved in the United States’ politics.


Administratively, Tanzania is divided into 26 regions, 21 on the mainland and 5 on Zanzibar. Also see AbbreviationFinder for abbreviation of TZ and its meanings of Tanzania. The regions are further divided into districts. Each of these units is administered by a government representative, a top official and elected council. At village level, there are village assemblies that anyone over the age of 18 can attend.


The country has a permanent commission of inquiry, led by an ombudsman, to investigate abuse of public authority. The judiciary consists at the top of an appeals court, presided over by a justice and four appeals judges. It is a special justice for Zanzibar. Furthermore, there is a court based in Dar-es-Salaam, which holds meetings in all regions, district courts (magistrates’ courts) and primary courts (headed by primary court magistrates). The last two sets of courts have limited jurisdiction. There is a right of appeal from the district courts to the supreme court and from the primary courts to a district court and then to the supreme court.

Presidents of Tanzania

Overview of Presidents in Tanzania:

Year President
1962-1985 Julius K. Nyerere (TANU/CCM)
1985-1995 Ali Hassan Mwinyi (CCM)
1995-2005 Benjamin W. Mkapa (CCM)
2005-2015 Jakaya Kikwete (CCM)
2015- John Pombe Magufuli (CCM)

Tanzania Head of Government

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