Gender Quotas Database

Country Data



Tanzania, United Republic of (United Republic of Tanzania)

Tanzania, United Republic of (United Republic of Tanzania) has a Unicameral parliament with the use of voluntary party quotas and legislated quotas for the single/lower house and at the sub-national level. 143 of 388 (37%) seats in the Bunge / National Assembly are held by women.

At a glance

Structure of Parliament: Unicameral

Are there legislated quotas...

  • For the Single/Lower House? Yes
  • For the Sub-National Level? Yes

Are there voluntary quotas...

  • Adopted by political parties? Yes

Is there additional information?...

  • Yes

Last updated: Apr 8, 2022

Single/Lower House

Bunge / National Assembly

Total seats 388
Total Women 143
% Women 37%
Election Year 2020
Electoral System FPTP
Quota Type Reserved seats
Election details IDEA Voter Turnout - IPU Parline
  Legal source Details
Quota type: Reserved seats Constitution

Women members must not make up less than 30% in the National Assembly. The special seats for women are distributed among the political parties in proportion to the number of seats awarded to them in parliament. (Constitution, Articles 66 (1:b) and 78 (1))

Electoral law

The National Assembly consists of 350 members. Of these, 102 are reserved for women, 239 members are elected in single member constituencies, 7 are appointed by the President, 5 represent Zanzibar (2 of whom are women) and 1 mandate belongs to the attorney general: ‘Every Political Party which contests Parliamentary elections may propose and submit the Commission names of eligible women candidates for nomination of Members of Parliament for Women Special Seats’ (Elections Regulations 2010, Article 86A (2)).

Legal sanctions for non-compliance N/A Not applicable
Rank order/placement rules Electoral law

‘The names of the women candidates proposed to the Commission shall be in order of preference’ (Elections Regulations 2010, Article 86A (4)).

Is the provision of direct public funding to political parties related to gender equality among candidates? No  
See more in International IDEA's Political Finance database
Are there provisions for other financial advantages to encourage gender equality in political parties? No  
See more in International IDEA's Political Finance database

Quota at the Sub-National Level

  • Quota type: Reserved seats
  Legal source Details
Quota type: Reserved seats Constitution  
Electoral law

At the local level, women must hold not less than one-third of the seats and these seats are allocated among political parties based on the seats that they have gained.

Legal sanctions for non-compliance N/A Not applicable
Rank order/placement rules N/A Not applicable

Voluntary Political Party Quotas*

Party Official name Details, Quota provisions
Revolutionary Party Chama cha Mapinduzi [CCM] Section 204 of the 2010 CCM Manifesto set out to attain 50-percent women representation in all elective bodies by 2015(CCM Manifesto 2005:127).

* Only political parties represented in parliament are included. When a country has legislated quotas in place, only political parties that have voluntary quotas that exceed the percentage/number of the national quota legislation are presented in this table.

Additional Information

The first piece of legislation on reserved seats for women, which was enacted before the 1995 elections, set the number of reserved seats at 15 per cent and these seats were distributed among various parties based on the number of constituency seats they had won. Prior to the 2005 elections, the Constitution was amended to provide special seats for women in parliament to be not less than 30 per cent and the rule of allocation of these seats among parties was amended to be based on the percentage of votes won by these parties.

Similarly, the number of reserved seats for women in Zanzibar’s House of Representatives was raised to 30 per cent prior to the 2005 elections and the allocation of these seats among parties is calculated in proportion to the number of constituency seats won by these parties, but only parties with more than 10 per cent of the total seats in the House of Representatives qualify for women's seats (Constitution of Zanzibar 1984, Articles 64(c), 67).

Some political parties such as Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM), Civic United Front (CUF), National Convention for Construction and Reform (NCCR-Mageuzi) and Chama cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo,(CCDM-Chadema) have adopted voluntary quotas, including at least one woman candidate to stand for election in each constituency.







Additional reading

  • Bjarnegård, E., & Zetterberg, P. 2016. 'Gender Equality Reforms on an Uneven Playing Field: Candidate Selection and Quota Implementation in Electoral Authoritarian Tanzania'. Government and Opposition, 464-486.
  • See the latest updates on United Republic of Tanzania on iKNOW Politics
  • Yoon, M.Y. 2001. ‘Democratization and Women's Legislative Representation in Sub-Saharan Africa’ in Democratization. Vol. 8, no.2, pp. 169-190.
  • Ballington J., da Silva V. & Pottie. D. 2001. Tanzania Gender Observer Mission Report. Johannesburg: Electoral Institute of Southern Africa.
  • Temu, F. & Sherbanu, K. 2001. Women and elections in Tanzania.
  • Lowe-Morna, C. 2000. ‘Strategies for Increasing Women's Participation in Politics’, Presented to the Fifth Meeting of Commonwealth Ministers Responsible for Women's Affairs.
  • Duri, P. F. 1999. ‘Women in the Shadow of Politics’, WomanPlus 6, no. 3. p. 24.
  • Massoi, A. 1999. ‘Working to Increase the number of Tanzanian Women in Government’, Femnet News 8, no. 2. p. 7.
  • Inter-Parliamentary Union. 1997. Democracy Still in the Making: A World Comparative Study. Geneva: Inter-Parliamentary Union.
  • Kabebari-Macharia, J. 1997. "Asserting the Right to Political Decision-making." GENDEReview – Kenya's Women and Development Quarterly 4, no. 1. pp. 13-14.
  • Killian, B. 1996. ‘A Policy of Parliamentary Special Seats for Women in Tanzania: Its Effectiveness’, Ufahamu 24, nos. 2-3. pp. 21-22.
  • Tanzania Parliament website,

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