Age and gender voting trends in the 2015 Tanzanian general election

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

In Tanzania, younger voters have been more inclined to support opposition parties than their elders, who have proven relatively reluctant to look beyond the incumbent party, Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM). A ‘gender gap’ also exists within Tanzanian politics. Women are more likely to be pro-CCM than men, who are comparatively open to a change of government. Based on qualitative data collected in Tanzania between 2013 and 2015, this article looks to explain these dynamics. Regarding the age-related trend, it argues that young people tend to evaluate CCM less positively than older people due to the difference in their levels of experience of the party’s evolving administrative style. They are also more likely to view the opposition favourably due to higher exposure to their message and a greater reluctance to accept attempts to discredit them. Concerning the gender gap, it contends that women’s generally lower access to information results in their taking a less critical attitude towards CCM. They are also more likely than men to be dissuaded from voting for the opposition due to fear of potential violence. Furthermore, new patterns of political patronage have seen women targeted in CCM’s vote buying exercises.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)44-62
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Eastern African Studies
Volume12
Issue number1
Early online date3 Dec 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Keywords

  • Tanzania
  • politics
  • voter behaviour
  • age
  • gender

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