Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Monday, May 1, 2023.
Zanzibar reiterates commitment to come up with new media law
The government of Zanzibar on Monday reiterated its commitment to provide media stakeholders in the semi-autonomous archipelago with new media law, with Information Minister Tabia Mwita Maulid saying the process is complete by almost 80 per cent.
Ms Maulid reassured media stakeholders at the ongoing commemoration of World Press Freedom Day, which kicked off Monday at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Unguja. This year’s commemoration’s theme is Shaping a Future of Rights: Freedom of Expression as a Driver for All Other Human Rights.
“Calls for the need of a new media law have been going on for some time now; there’s no place I go that people do not mention the need for a new law to govern media operations in Zanzibar,” Ms Maulid said in her keynote speech.
“I want to assure you that the process is complete by 80 per cent. We have also worked on the advice from key stakeholders that their suggestions be accommodated in the new legislation. I’m proud to inform you that we have done so by almost 99 per cent,” she emphasised.
There are two principal laws governing the operation of the media sector in Zanzibar, which stakeholders have been calling on Zanzibar authorities to amend, calling them “outdated and repressive.”
Full story here.
ACT-Wazalendo welcomes formation of committee on political reforms in Z’bar
Opposition party ACT-Wazalendo on Monday said that it welcomes an announcement by Zanzibar President Hussein Mwinyi that a special committee will be formed to implement recommendations to improve multiparty democracy in the semi-autonomous archipelago.
It follows an announcement by President Mwinyi on Saturday that the committee comprising members from several political parties has been formed as part of the implementation of the recommendations made by the presidential task force on multiparty democracy in Zanzibar.
The task force, which was formed on October 10, 2022, submitted its recommendations to President Mwinyi on November 3, 2022, containing several proposals to build healthy pluralistic politics in Zanzibar as well as reconciliation and cohesion among its people.
In a statement on Monday, ACT-Wazaendo’s Secretary of Publicity, Salim Bimani, said the party is not aware if the committee has already been formed, adding that it welcomes its formation because it is overdue.
“We welcome President Mwinyi’s statement because we believe that it will fast-track the formation of the committee and start operations without unnecessary delays,” Bimani said.
He was presenting the resolutions of his party’s Leadership Committee, which sat on Sunday to deliberate on President Mwinyi’s statements concerning the committee.
Bimani said reforms in Zanzibar are mandatory because the environment that led to electoral chaos in the 2020 elections and the deaths of dozens of Zanzibaris remains the same.
Some of the measures that ACT-Wazalendo wants the government of Zanzibar to take include undertaking major changes in the legal and electoral systems, including reforms at the Zanzibar Electoral Commission (ZEC), the judiciary and law enforcement agencies.
It also wants the arrangement of the Government of National Unity (GNU) to be improved and the government to compensate victims of the 2020 electoral violence.
“We want to assure Zanzibaris and Tanzanians in general that we will provide all the needed cooperation in realising the formation of such committee,” Mr Bimani said, “and in the implementation of agreed steps to promote democracy, peace and unity in the country.”
Australian Peak Rare Earths locks $18m to develop Ngualla project in Mbeya
Australian-based Peak Rare Earths said on Monday it had locked US$18 million from high net worth and offshore institutional investors to advance its Ngualla project in Mbeya.
The company said about 55 million new shares would be offered at 50 Australian cents each in a two-tranche institutional placement.
The first tranche of the placement will raise $14.3 million, with shares to be allotted on Friday, May 5.
Peak’s largest shareholder, Shenghe Resources, has committed to increasing its shareholding from 19.8 per cent to 19.9 per cent via the placement.
Given Shenghe currently holds more than 10 per cent of the company’s issued share capital and has a nominee director on the Peak board, its participation will be in tranche two and subject to shareholder approval.
The placement marks another step towards developing the Ngualla rare earth project. It follows the signing of a binding framework agreement with the government of Tanzania last month after a five-year wait.
A recently updated bankable feasibility study (BFS) estimates that Ngualla requires a capital investment of $321 million to produce 16,200 tonnes of concentrates per year to be sold to third-party processors.
A final investment decision of the mine, which has an expected productive life of 24 years with annual operating costs at $93 million a year, is slated by the end of September.
Reacting to the announcement, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Minerals, Mr Kheri Mahimbali, described the development as “good news.”
“Many congratulations [on] this milestone,” Mahimbali wrote on Twitter. “We look forward to the Final Investment Decision (FID) before October 2023.”
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