An opposition party in Tanzania has condemned the arrest of its leader describing it as a clear act of oppression and intimidation ahead of October’s elections.

The Alliance for Change and Transparency says Zitto Kabwe and seven colleagues have been accused by the police of unlawful assembly.

A party statement says police interrupted a legal political meeting in south-east Tanzania’s Linde Region and arrested them on trumped up charges.

The east African nation will hold general elections in October. President John Magufuli, who is expected to run for a second term, dissolved parliament last week.

Rights groups say oppression of the opposition has increased significantly since President Magufuli came to power in 2015 during which time there has also been a clampdown on the media.

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