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Kikwete, Jakaya Mrisho

Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete (jäkä´yä kĬkwĕ´tā), 1950–, Tanzanian political leader, b. Msoga, Tanganyika, grad. Univ. of Dar-es-Salaam (1978). He joined the defense forces while in college, and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel before he retired in 1992. Kikwete entered politics in 1988 and served as minister of energy, water, and minerals (1990–94) and of finance (1994–95). He unsuccessfully sought the presidency in 1995 but then served under President Benjamin Mkapa as foreign minister (1995–2005). In 2005 he mounted a successful campaign for president as candidate of the ruling Party of the Revolution, winning 80% of the vote; he was reelected in 2010 with more than 60% of the vote.

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