The Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) Content Committee has banned for six months a Morogoro-based radio station, Imaan FM, and Mwanza-based Neema FM Radio after broadcasting on different occasions inflammatory statements that violated the law and broadcasting ethics.
The committee has also fined Clouds FM Radio Sh5 million after holding a discussion that promotes and supports homosexuality in the country through its morning programme, Power Breakfast, in a ‘Jicho la Ng’ombe’ segment.
In the bid to promote tourism in Tanzania, the Tanzania Tourist Board (TTB) in partnership with Witch & Wizard Creative (Pty) Ltd, South Africa, have agreed to establish an International Tourism Fair in Tanzania to be known as Swahili Tourism Fair effective from October, 2013. The Agreement be signed on February 25, 2013 at the Mlimani City Conference Centre, Dar es Salaam, allows TTB to work with Witch & Wizard Creative (Pty) Ltd, which is the company that manages the INDABA in Durban (South Africa), one of the largest tourism marketing events on the African calendar and one of the top three ‘must visit’ events of its kind on the global calendar. INDABA is owned by South Africa Tourism Board and attracts well over 13000 delegates from various travel, tourism and related industries around the world. It is expected that the Swahili Tourism Fair will grow and eventually become as famous as the INDABA of South Africa and will hence be the iconic annual event for travel and tourism promotion in Tanzania.
The planning for Swahili Tourism Fair has taken cognizance of the continued existence of Karibu Travel & Tourism Fair (KTTF) which has been running in Tanzania since the year 2000, and the need to ensure that, the two fairs complement each other. KTTF which is held in Arusha in June each year focuses on the regional market, while the Swahili Tourism Fair will be held in Dar es Salaam in October each year and will exclusively focus on international clientele. TTB undertakes to work with KTTF to ensure that the same KTTF grows and attracts more regional clientele so that in the long run, Tanzania may join other countries in the world in promoting events tourism with more than one international tourism fair.
Dar es Salaam has been strategically selected as a place for staging the fair because of its geographical location, adequate air access; the existing ‘state of the art’ and readily available infrastructure and amenities suitable for establishing an international tourism fair. The first Swahili Tourism Fair will be held from October 2 – 5, 2013 at the Mlimani City Conference Centre. It is a facility with finishes of an international standard; high quality concertina type stacking doors with full range of conference facilities and amenities. It is equipped with power, lighting, wireless internet connectivity and provides international quality conference space. There are shopping centers, banks, food joints, adequate parking and drop off zones and generous foyers wrapping round the building. Indeed, this ultra-modern design facility, matches the world standard for staging an international tourism fair and has met the requirements of Witch & Wizard.
The Tanzania Tourist Board advises all tourism operators to upgrade their accommodation facilities ready to tap these potential upcoming visitors.
Reporters Without Borders wrote to Tanzanian minister of home affairs Emmanuel Nchimbi last week to call for an end to the harassment of the journalist Erick Kabendera and his family by representatives of the state.
“Tanzania’s ranking in the 2013 Reporters Without Borders press freedom index is 36 places lower than last year,” the 18 February letter said. “No journalists had been killed until September 2012, but thereafter two were killed in the space of four months and this has had a big impact on the Tanzanian news environment.
“Harassment by officials of such a respected journalist as Mr. Kabendera can only exacerbate the current sense of helplessness among Tanzanian journalists, especially when everything indicates that it is not random. These intimidation attempts are targeting a talented journalist and seem designed to protect a senior official who was affected by his testimony.”
Signed by secretary-general Christophe Deloire, the letter added: “Reporters Without Borders urges you to call the Immigration Department to order so that this disgraceful harassment stops. We also urge you to tell the police that they must do whatever is necessary to guarantee the safety of Mr. Kabendera and his family.”
A former employee of the Dar es Salaam-based Guardian newspaper, Kabendera was a 2009 winner of the David Astor Journalism Award for journalists who are “exceptionally promising and with a great potential for excellence in the future.”
In December 2012 in London, he testified for the defence in a libel suit that Tanzanian businessman and Guardian owner Reginald Mengi brought against British blogger Sarah Hermitage.
Ever since his return to Tanzania, he has been the target of intimidation attempts. His home has been ransacked three times and Immigration officials have been casting doubt on his nationality without any legal grounds.
His elderly and ailing parents were escorted in an appalling manner to a regional immigration office where they were subjected to an eight-hour interrogation and were asked to sign documents without being allowed to read them.
Although life-long employees of the Tanzanian state, Kabendera’s parents obtained limited and unsatisfactory explanations from the officials who interrogated them. The officials said that the investigation was ordered by Immigration Department Commissioner Magnus Paul Ulungi, and that it was a “sensitive” matter that had to be followed “closely.” One official added that Kabendera was suspected of selling state secrets to “European powers” but “everything will be all right” if he remains “humble.”
After falling 36 places, Tanzania is now ranked 70th out of 179 countries in the latest Reporters Without Borders press freedom index.
The quality of life for a large majority of Tanzanians has been growing from bad to worse over the past few years, a situation that poses serious challenges to economic planners and political leaders.
Findings in a recently concluded survey show that hunger, high cost of living, religious conflicts, unemployment and education are key problems the people face today.
The survey, launched yesterday by Ipsos-Synovate Tanzania, dubbed “The National Spec Barometer” involved some 2,000 respondents from 23 regions and out of these, 50 per cent said lack of food is the key problem facing them while 44 per cent said high cost of living was their major concern. Some 43 per cent pointed at religious conflicts.
Most Tanzanians, according to the poll, expect the government not only to prioritise basic services and amenities like education; health and water but address religious conflicts as well.
And then, 34 per cent said unemployment was the most serious problem while 30 per cent cited access to quality education as their major problem.
Corruption stood at 23 per cent while 22 per cent said electricity, roads and housing were the biggest issue.
“When observing the trends in 2011 up to now, it is interesting to note that religious conflicts have become a reality for Tanzanians, a concern which was not observed before.” reads the report.
Corruption and inflation which were the key problem in 2011 are currently not perceived as being a key challenge to most Tanzanians.
Asked what issues they think Tanzanians want their leaders to address, over 50 per cent of the respondents said their preferred political parties have not addressed issues that are most close to the people. Health, education, employment and food security are the key areas which the public believes need to be given attention.
Looking at between 2011 and now, the government performance on key issues has dropped except on the area of the government’s plan to write a new Constitution in which there is a 14 per cent increase in the way the State is perceived to be performing much better.
Inflation and provision of health service are seen as deteriorating quality-wise. In the 2011 barometer, some 57 per cent of the respondents pointed fingers at poor provision of health services compared to 56 per cent in the latest poll.
Some 47 per cent of the respondents were more concerned about inflation in 2011 compared to 20 per cent this year. The government’s performance in crime control has dropped from 81 per cent in 2011 to 73 per cent in 2012, followed by access to quality education from 70 per cent in 2011 to 66 per cent in 2012.
Asked how they approve the overall performance of most of the public institutions in the last months of 2012,the respondents said the performance approval rank of key institution in the country remained basically constant but with a tendency to decline rather than increase. The government rating stood at 77 per cent in 2012 compared to 81 per cent in 2011, The President’s Office performed a little better in 2012 with 79 percent against 76 rating in 2011.
The Prime Minister’s Office performance declined from 84 per cent in 2011 to 78 per cent in 2012 while the Vice-President’s Office went up a little, from 61 per cent in 2011 to 67 per cent in 2012 while the performance of the Speaker of the National Assembly moved from 62 per cent in 2011 to 69 per cent in 2012.
People’s trust in Parliament has remained almost constant with 78 per cent in 2011 against 77 in 2012. Trust in MPs remained the same at 59 per cent while trust in courts plunged from 55 per cent in 2011 to 50 per cent in 2012.Trust in media also tumbled from 87 per cent in 2011 to 85 per cent in 2012 while only 49 per cent of the respondents in 2012 approved the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) compared to 51 in 2011.
At least 70 per cent of the respondents approved local government authority in 2012 compared to 64 per cent in 2011.
Asked if the level of corruption in Tanzania has changed in the past six months, 4 out of 10 Tanzanians are of the opinion that corruption in the country has increased while 30 per cent believed it has remained the same. On average, government institutions and key personalities commitment to fight against corruption have not changed from 2011.
The Police and the Judiciary have the lowest scores in commitment against corruption Police take the crown for the institution is perceived to be most corrupt with 33 per cent saying it is rotten while courts and the health sector come closely second at 16 per cent.
“At least 53 per cent of Tanzanians are aware of the Lake Nyasa dispute pitting Tanzania and Malawi. Over 90 per cent of the public is satisfied with how the dispute was resolved,” says the pollster.
Compared to 2011, all political parties have lost out on affinity with the general public, There is an increase on non-commital persons from 2 per cent in 2011 to 12 per cent in 2012, which have no allegiance to any party.
The number of respondents who are not sure of the person they will elect doubled during the period between 2011 and 2012. The main reason for the increase in uncertainty is loss of faith in leaders.
When looking at specific presidential aspirants, Dr Willibrod Slaa popularity has shrunk significantly compared to what it was a year back, dropping from 42 percent in 2011 to 17 per cent.
In 2012 there was no clear cut who is the preferred presidential aspirant amongst the public.