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Tanzania’s Presidential Race Just Got Heated

Prominent opposition leader and presidential hopeful Tundu Lissu has returned to Tanzania to a rousing welcome, three years after narrowly surviving an assassination attempt. Chanting “president, president”, hundreds of cheering supporters gathered on Monday at an airport in Dar-es-Salaam to greet the 52-year-old, who had been living in self-imposed exile in Belgium. Lissu fled the country after being shot 16 times by unknown gunmen outside his home in the administrative capital, Dodoma, in September 2017. A fiery critic of Tanzanian President John Magufuli, Lissu had had a series of run-ins with the police in the months before the gun attack. He was arrested several times, accused of insulting the president – whom he had called a “dictator” over alleged assaults on the opposition and the media – and disturbing public order. Following the assassination attempt, Magufuli expressed shock at the news and ordered an investigation. Three years on, the gunmen remain at large.