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The Chanzo Morning Briefing Tanzania News – December 14, 2023. 

In our briefing today: Tanzania re-selected to the MCC after a seven years hiatus; Personal Data Protection Commission board’s chairperson appointed; Joseph Oleshangay: Winner of Weimar Human Rights Prize shares future of his activism; AfDB approves over $600m for 650-kilometre Tanzania, Burundi rail infrastructure; History as MNH launches first-ever hyperbaric machine in East Africa; Remmy Ongala: The life, death and legacy of legendary musician.

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Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Wednesday, December 13, 2023.

Tanzania re-selected to the MCC after a seven years hiatus

Tanzania has been selected again to join the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) a US grant program after a seven year hiatus.

Tanzania state house shared the news yesterday following the virtual meeting between Tanzania President, Samia Suluhu Hassan and the Chief Executive Officer of MCC, Alice P. Albright.

By 2013, MCC had invested about US  $698.1 in Tanzania, with energy sector projects being the highlight of the program. The MCC board decided to halt the program in 2016, withdrawing over US $ 472 of funding in response to the botched Zanzibar election.

MCC re-selection is one of the few payout of Tanzania efforts to reform its governance.

Personal Data Protection Commission board Chairperson appointed

Tanzania’s President has appointed Adadi Mohamed Rajabu as the Chairperson of the Personal Data Protection Commission board. President Samia Suluhu has also appointed Fatma Mohamed Ali to serve as the Vice-chairperson of the board.

Chairperson Rajabu has served various posts as a former security officer, his career inside the Police Force run through several years with the last prominent post being the Director of Criminal Investigation. Following retirement from Police, Rajabu was appointed as Tanzania’s ambassador to Zimbabwe.In 2015, Rajabu became a member of parliament of Muheza constituency until 2020.

The Personal Data Protection Act was enacted in November 2022, with the appointment of the Commission board means the Act is set to become operational. The Commission will become fully operational with the appointment of its Director General.

Joseph Oleshangay: Winner of Weimar Human Rights Prize shares future of his activism

Joseph Moses Oleshangay, the Tanzanian human rights activist who won the 2023 Weimar Human Rights Prize for his fight for the Maasai people in the country, has vowed to continue the fight, describing the award as a “recognition” for his work.

Mr Oleshangay, an Arusha-based lawyer with the Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC), a leading human rights organisation in the country, received the award on December 10, 2023, in the German city of Weimar. 

Organised by the city of Weimar, the prize is awarded to people, groups or organisations committed to protecting and enforcing fundamental human rights worldwide. It is given on December 10 yearly to coincide with the United Nations’ International Human Rights Day.

The prize, endowed with EURO 5,000, equivalent to Sh13.5 million, recognises Mr Oleshangay’s fight to protect the fundamental rights of his Maasai people in Ngorongoro and Loliondo whom authorities have been trying to “relocate” to other parts of the country in an exercise shrouded in controversy.

Full story here.

AfDB approves over $600m for 650-kilometre Tanzania, Burundi rail infrastructure

The Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group has approved US$696.41 million for Burundi and Tanzania to start Phase II of the Joint Tanzania-Burundi-DR Congo Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) project.

The loan will allow the construction of 651 kilometres on the Tanzania-Burundi railway line, the work of which will consist of developing a single electrified standard gauge track. This will be subdivided into three lots: Tabora – Kigoma (411 km) and Uvinza – Malagarasi (156 km) sections in Tanzania and the Malagarasi –Musongati section (84 km) in Burundi. 

A statement released Wednesday explained that the standard gauge railway project will be connected to Tanzania’s existing railway network, providing access to the port of Dar es Salaam. 

Full story here.

History as MNH launches first-ever hyperbaric machine in East Africa

The Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) on Wednesday launched the Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy machine, making Tanzania the first country in the East African region and the second in Sub-Saharan Africa to acquire the essential media equipment.

The state-of-the-art machine will enable the hospital to speed up the healing of carbon monoxide poisoning, gangrene, wounds that won’t heal, and infections in which tissues are starved for oxygen.

MNH’s Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy specialist, Dr Albert Magohe, was quoted by the government-owned Daily News newspaper saying the newly introduced technology would enable the hospital to treat diseases that were impossible to deal with in the past.

The instrument is estimated to have cost about Sh250 million.

According to MNH’s director, Prof Mohamed Janabi, only five personnel can provide Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy service, with two trained at Dartmouth in the United States.

Remmy Ongala: The life, death and legacy of legendary musician

Thirteen years ago today, Tanzania lost an iconic voice and one of its absolute finest musicians by a long shot. The Tanzanian music fraternity said goodbye to the legendary Mungamba Ramazani Mtoro Ongala, popularly known as Dr Remmy, who bid adieu to the world at age 63.

Dr Remmy, whose music career spanned several decades and who belted out memorable hits touching on all aspects of life from romance and politics to culture like Kifo, Mambo kwa Soksi, Mrema, Lolango, Mwanza and Asili ya Muziki,  is a name mentioned alongside the likes of Salum Abdallah, Mbaraka Mwishehe, Juma Kilaza, Bi Kidude, Hemed Maneti, Muhidini ‘Gurumo’ Maalim and so many other great Tanzanian musicians to have ever lived.

In view thereof, I decided to pen this article in honour of Dr Remmy, whose music continues to inspire generations and thus invites all of you to look back at the extraordinary journey of this extraordinary creative soul who has left a monumental mark on the Tanzanian music industry.

Full analysis here.

This is it for today, and we hope you enjoyed our briefing. Please consider subscribing to our newsletter (see below), following us on X (Twitter) (here), or joining us on Telegram (here). And if you have any questions or comments, please drop a word to our editors at

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