Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here once again with all the big stories that broke in Tanzania on Thursday, July 16, 2021.
Police ban CHADEMA’s New Constitution conference
Police in Mwanza yesterday ordered the opposition CHADEMA party in a short notice to cancel its New Constitution conference which was to take place today, July 17, 2021, in the port city on the southern shore of Lake Victoria, citing a ban on political rallies as the reason to cancel the event.
The conference was supposed to be an internal one, taking place at the Boma Hotel in the city. It was expected that CHADEMA’s senior leaders from across the country would take part in the conference. According to the letter sent to CHADEMA whose copy The Chanzo has seen, the police said that CHADEMA has not applied for the permit to organize the conference, something that makes it “illegal.”
“[The police] will not allow the conference to take place considering the fact that political rallies as well demonstrations have been banned [by the government],” read the letter in part. The ban on political rallies was imposed in early 2016 by the late President John Magufuli who said that they were distracting him from the promises he made on the campaign trail.
On June 28, 2021, during a meeting with editors at State House in Dar es Salaam as part of the commemoration of her 100 days in office, President Samia Suluhu Hassan indicated that the ban would remain enforceable as she works to “fix the economy” first, drawing a lot of criticism from opposition parties as well as other Tanzania’s democracy activists.
John Pambalu, CHADEMA Youth Council national chairperson, whose office is responsible for organizing the conference, said that the event remains in place the police letter notwithstanding. Writing on his Twitter timeline, Mr Pambalu said: “[Inspector General of Police Simon] Sirro you can do as you wish. But we will not be deterred until we see the last drop of our blood. Our New Constitution conference will take place as planned.”
COVID-19: Mbatia calls for mass testing
The national chairperson of the opposition NCCR-Mageuzi party Mr James Mbatia urged the government yesterday to make sure Tanzania’s hospitals are well supplied with necessary medical equipment that would enable them to effectively address the coronavirus pandemic that the Samia Suluhu Hassan administration is grappling with.
Mr Mbatia made the remarks during a press conference in Dar es Salaam where he also emphasized the need to motivate public healthcare workers who are at the frontline battling the deadly disease. He also asked the government to allow people who want to test COVID-19 to do so free of charge.
“We should be told where we can do testing,” said Mr Mbatia. “The government and the private sector should collaborate in making [mass testing] a reality. It should avoid monopolizing the testing exercise. They say prevention is better than cure and testing is an important aspect of any preventive mechanism.”
Meanwhile, Vice President Philip Mpango yesterday named Kigoma as one of the top ten regions with many COVID-19 cases in Tanzania, urging people to stop ignoring the disease and start taking all preventive measures recommended by health experts aimed at curbing the spread of the killer virus. Dr Mpango made the remarks in Kigoma as he started his official visit to the region.
DPP files fresh charges against Sabaya, accomplices
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) on Friday dropped armed robbery charges against the former Hai district commissioner Lengai ole Sabaya and his two other accomplices but immediately refiled them, with state attorney Tumaini Kweka asking the case to be moved from the Arusha District Court to the Arusha Resident Magistrate Court.
State attorney Abdallah Chavula read three armed robbery charges that faced Mr Sabaya and his two accomplices Sylvester Nyegu and Daniel Mbura. The prosecution accused Mr Sabaya and his two accomplices of armed robbery and stealing Sh2.7 million from Mohamed Saad on February 9, 2021.
They are also accused of stealing Sh390, 000 from Bakari Msangi who is the ruling Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM) councillor for the Sombetini Ward in Arusha on February 9, 2021. The third charge that Mr Sabaya and his accomplices face is stealing Sh35, 000 and a Tecno mobile phone from Ramadhani Rashid on February 9, 2021.
The new case that is facing Mr Sabaya and his two accomplices will be brought for hearing on Monday, July 19, 2021. Meanwhile, the economic sabotage case that faces Mr Sabaya and others has been postponed until July 30, 2021.
Mwinyi appoints new ZEC director
Zanzibar President Hussein Mwinyi yesterday appointed Mr Khamis Kona Khamis as the director of Zanzibar Electoral Commission (ZEC), replacing Mr Thabit Idarous Faina whose appointment has been revoked, according to a statement released by Zanzibar Chief Secretary Zena Said yesterday.
Apart from Mr Khamis, Dr Mwinyi also appointed Mr Mohamed Ame Makame as the executive director of the Zanzibar Civil Status Registration Agency (ZCSRA) as well as Mr Said Mtumwa Faki as the Zanzibar Government Printing Press (ZAGPA).
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