Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Monday, April 4, 2022.
Bunge live is back after six years of blackout
The National Assembly clerk Nenelwa Mwihambi announced Monday that live broadcasting of Tanzania’s parliamentary sessions will resume on April 5, 2022, to a huge relief to those who were accustomed to the sessions after they were subjected to a six-years blackout.
A number of excuses were made in 2016 to stop the live broadcasting of parliamentary sessions. These included arguments that the government did not have the budget in place to sustain the arrangement that was aimed at making constituents aware of their representatives’ performance in the lawmaking body.
When partners offered to shoulder the costs associated with maintaining the arrangement, the government came up with another excuse: that the fact that parliamentary sessions were taking place during the working time the arrangement was making people concentrate less on productive activities.
The move was highly criticised by human rights activists who interpreted it as a deliberate denial of information to members of the general public, a development that would deprive them of the power they needed to do informed decisions.
But this criticism fell on deaf ears and the ban has remained enforceable since Monday when the Parliament said it would finally lift it. Monday’s development is the latest one in the series of measures that have been taken to improve Tanzania’s civic space since the coming to power by President Samia Suluhu Hassan on March 17, 2022.
Some of these measures include the release from prisons of a number of people with dubious cases; the initiation of a political dialogue that aims at improving multiparty democracy in Tanzania; and the lifting of a ban previously imposed on newspapers to name but a few measures.
Addressing reporters in Dodoma yesterday, Ms Mwihambi said the live Bunge sessions popularly known as ‘Bunge Live’ will officially commence during the seventh parliament budget session.
This comes after the renovation of the parliament studio and broadcasting approval from the Parliamentary Leadership Committee.
UK launches Sh271billion programme to improve access to education in Tanzania
The UK Minister for Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean, Vicky Ford has on Monday launched an £89 million programme that is expected to improve learning outcomes for children, with special emphasis to be given to girls, children living with disabilities, and those living in deprived areas.
According to a statement released yesterday, the Shule Bora (Good School) project will improve the quality and access to education for over four million children in Tanzania.
Ms Ford arrived in Tanzania over the weekend for a three-day official visit where among other activities she has been meeting and holding talks with senior government officials, including President Samia Suluhu Hassan.
“We remain committed to improving access to high-quality education across Africa,” Ford was quoted as saying. “That’s why we are launching the Shule Bora programme here in Tanzania, to give the most vulnerable children a chance to learn.”
The Shule Bora programme is directly funded by UK Official Development Assistance. Among other things, the programme is expected to strengthen Tanzania’s teaching workforce and support the government of Tanzania in strengthening the value for money of education provision at school.
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