Tanzania ‘to study’ media repression reports

The authorities in Tanzania will study two reports released by Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International that painted a bleak picture of the state of freedom of expression in the country.

The two human rights organisations say new laws passed since 2015, when President John Magufuli came into office, have “repressed” independent reporting and restricted the work of the media, non-governmental organisations and opposition groups.

Tanzania’s Justice Minister Augsutine Mahiga told the BBC that the government would issue “a line-by-line response” to the allegations made.

He said the reports, released on Monday, were being assessed with the seriousness they deserve, although some of the issues raised had been dealt with in the past.

The rights groups also urged President Magufuli to repeal the repressive laws and unconditionally drop all charges against journalists and opposition figures.

Since 2015 Tanzania has fallen down the rank on the World Press Freedom Index, currently ranking 118 out of 180 countries.

However, the government has dismissed accusations of stifling the media.

Source: BBC

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