Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Thursday, September 1, 2022.
Govt at pains to justify electronic transaction levies to unconvinced citizens
You could tell from Thursday’s joint ministerial press conference in the capital Dodoma that authorities in Tanzania are trying very hard to justify the move to impose levies on all electronic transactions, a move whose criticism continues to echo from various corners of the country.
Finance and Planning Minister Mwigulu Nchemba held the press conference in the company of Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office-Parliament, Policy and Coordination, George Simbachawene, Minister of State in the President’s Office, Regional Administration and Local Governments Innocent Bashungwa and Minister of State (Policy, Parliament, Labour, Employment, Youth and the Disabled) Prof Joyce Lazaro Ndalichako.
All the ministers emphasized the need for the government to go ahead with the levies, stressing that there was no way the government was going to be able to leave no one behind in its development efforts if the people decline to fund those efforts.
“This levy is not a business tax nor is it derived from business profits,” Nchemba, who has been quite persistent in defending the levies, told reporters in the capital. “But it was established as a solidarity fund so that we can get resources to implement projects that are necessary for the public.”
On his part, Mr Bashungwa said an “inclusive levy system” will help the country to reduce a widened gap between the haves and the have-nots. He said through the system, the country is improving social services including health and education.
But, telling from their reactions online, far from appeasing the citizens, the ministers attracted more opposition from Tanzanians on the levy.
The opposition hardened when Mr Nchemba said that the government’s idea to come up with a levy on all bank withdrawals came from the people themselves, with many wondering who these people actually were.
Dr Nchemba, however, said that the government was cognizant of people’s concerns, promising to go and work on them, inviting any concerned citizen to reach out to the government for any idea or recommendation on how best can the government work the issue out.
Stakeholders call on media to stop stigmatizing artisanal miners
Stakeholders working with artisanal miners in Tanzania are not happy with how the media in the East African nation portray small-scale miners in the country, urging them to develop a broad view when covering the sector.
The sentiments were shared here during a two-day knowledge-sharing session organised by the Foundation for Artisanal and Small-scale Mining Development (FADev), a Dar es Salaam-based NGO that works around issues related to Artisanal and Small-scale Mining (ASM).
The session, which took place between August 30 and August 31, 2022, brought together editors of leading media outlets from the Lake Zone region and experts working in the ASM area in an attempt to bridge the knowledge gap that exists between the two.
Theonestina Mwasha is FADev Executive Secretary who said during the workshop that media play an important role in knowledge dissemination, urging editors to equip themselves with necessary knowledge so that they can be able to play that role effectively.
“Journalists must be eager to work to help the community and not to put money first,” Mwasha, who is considered to be the first female mineral processing engineer in Tanzania, told editors. “They should help these small-scale miners.”
Full story here.
Tanzania becomes Africa’s latest country to test 5G technology
Tanzania on Thursday became the latest African country to begin testing a 5G mobile network, following Ethiopia, South Africa and Nigeria.
It become the 13th African country that is either conducting 5G trials or has begun rolling out the technology, according to the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).
Minister of Information, Communication and Information technology (ICT) Nape Nnauye launched Vodacom Tanzania’s 5G technology, promising that the government was ready to create a conducive environment to boost innovations geared to bring solutions to the community.
Mr Nnauye said that technological advancement is vital in solving some problems and creating new opportunities.
“5G is one of the means that will help the government to increase the efficiency of the National Fibre Optic Cable,” Mr Nnauye, who doubles as Mtama MP (Chama cha Mapinduzi – CCM), said.
He said Vodacom’s move to install 5G will not only help the government to strengthen the country’s digital economy but also make the country to be among the few countries in the African continent to experience 5G technology.
Other African countries that have already embarked on 5G are Botswana, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Madagascar, Zimbabwe, Mauritius, Nigeria and Senegal as countries that were ahead of Tanzania in ICT developments.
Vodacom Tanzania becomes the first telecom in the country to introduce the 5G technology.
“Our promise is to continue using technology to improve the lives of Tanzanians and lead the digital transformation. As we launch 5G we plan to reach 90 per cent of Tanzanians with 3G and 45 by 2024,” Vodacom Acting Managing Director Hilda Bujiku said during the launch.
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