Lissu arrested in Singida

Singida East MP Tundu Lissu (Chadema) has been arrested in Singida over undisclosed reasons.

Lissu was put under arrest soon after finishing addressing a public rally in Ikungi trading centre, the headquarters of the constituency. 

Singida Regional Police Commander Mr Thobias Sedoyeka confirmed on phone that they were holding the opposition MP but did not say why. 

Chadema spokesperson Tumaini Makene confirmed the arrest tonight and said Mr Lissu was transported to the regional headquarters where he was still being held. Makene said in a statement posted on social media that Chadema officials in the region were at the police station following up on the matter.

Earlier in a short message sent out to colleagues, Mr Lissu said he had not been told why he was being arrested.“I was arrested soon after addressing a meeting in Ikungi, in my constituency. 

Regional Crime Officer called Babu Mollel told me he was under instruction from his boss to arrest me,” he said. Mr Lissu claimed there was an order from Dar es Salaam to have him arrested.“As I write now I am under the police who are waiting for further instructions on what do to. 

I have heard they want to take me to Dar es Salaam tonight,” said the Singida East MP who is a lawyer and the opposition party’s chief legal officer.

The MP who is a fierce critic of the government declared that he was not afraid of what he viewed as tactics by the government to silence him. “There is no shutting up! I will continue to defend our rights to criticize the rulers wherever I will be…whether in freedom or in jail as long as a have the voice to speak with,” said Lissu. 

He said he was not ready to be silenced and urged support from his colleagues. Mr Lissu has recently been in trouble with authorities and is facing several court cases, including for sedition and incitement. The MP was charged with incitement after he branded President John Magufuli “a petty dictator
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