Campaigning begins in Tanzania on Wednesday ahead of a general election due at the end of October.

President John Magufuli, who is seeking re-election, faces 14 challengers.

The ruling CCM party has dominated Tanzania’s politics for decades.

A united opposition during the last election gave the party the strongest challenge yet.

But the crowded race this time could give the president greater advantage.

Mr Magufuli was widely praised as a reformist when he took office five years ago but has since been accused of stifling dissent.

In June he controversially declared that the coronavirus had been defeated in Tanzania through the power of prayer.

Most Tanzanians have since resumed normal business in spite of concerns raised by critics at home and abroad.

This year’s election is expected to be the most challenging yet as the government continues to clamp down on dissent.

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