Dar es Salaam. Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on Wednesday, February 7, 2024.
Tanzania’s radio station Wasafi FM on spot after canceling show with opposition leader Tundu Lissu
Wasafi FM, one of Tanzania’s most popular radio stations, came under fire on Wednesday after cancelling a much-anticipated interview with the deputy national chairperson (Tanzania Mainland) of the opposition CHADEMA without providing satisfying explanations to its listeners and the party’s members and followers.
Mr Lissu, an opposition figure commanding much respect and followership in the East African nation, was due to appear on Wasafi FM’s morning show, Good Morning, which airs every weekday from 5 AM to 8 AM, according to a poster shared online on Tuesday advertising the interview. The poster didn’t say what topics the interview would cover.
But in an interesting turn of events, the show hosts informed Mr Lissu late Tuesday evening, citing an unspecified “order from above” as a reason that led to such a decision, Mr Lissu revealed during a brief interview with journalists outside Wasafi FM’s premises in Mbezi Beach, Dar es Salaam, where he had gone to seek further clarification on the matter.
Full story here.
Canada sues Precision Air in the UK High Court over alleged unsettled debts
A Canadian export credit agency is suing a private Tanzanian airline, Precision Air, in the UK High Court over unsettled debt of nearly US$26 million that the airline took under an aircraft financing agreement, it has been revealed.
A report by the Global Trade Review, known simply as GTR, revealed that the lawsuit stems from a 2012 agreement between Export Development Canada (EDC) and Precision Air whereby the former provided direct financing enabling the aviation firm to purchase two model 42-600 jets from French-Italian manufacturer ATR.
The deal, GTR reports, involved a special-purpose vehicle, Antelope Leasing, which acted as the borrower and held the aircraft as collateral on behalf of EDC.
Full story here.
PPRA and NEEC Signed MOU to Empower Special Groups in Public Procurement.
The Public Procurement Regulatory Authority (PPRA) and National Economic Empowerment Council (NEEC) have signed an agreement to build the capacity of special groups (women, youth, persons with disabilities, and the elderly) to ensure their effective participation in public procurement.
Tanzania’s procurement law provides that 30 percent of annual public procurement volume should go to special groups; women (5%), youth (10%), person with disabilities (10%) and the elderly(5%).
A study by The Chanzo and Africa Freedom of Information Centre (AFIC) found that despite the scheme’s potential in empowering special group businesses, procuring entities in Tanzania were not complying.
The lack of awareness of the scheme, and low capacity of special groups was also noted as an issue that made the scheme which was introduced in 2016 to become futile. The research also shows that the process for identification and registration of special groups was cumbersome; the lack of data on the scheme’s implementation also made it difficult to monitor progress.
Also, the fact that the law required special groups to access this opportunity as groups was itself a shortfall, causing already established companies and sole proprietors to avoid the hassle of forming groups.
The lack of ownership in the provision was also a challenge, as no specific government department owned the scheme. The agreement between PPRA and NEEC might be a future way forward for the effective implementation of the scheme.
Speaking during the signing ceremony, the Deputy Prime Minister, Dotto Biteko emphasized on the need of building the capacity of special groups in accessing these opportunities.
“PPRA reported that from July 2023 until now, 48 tenders have been taken by special groups, 18 to youth groups; 28 women groups; and two to elderly groups. However, its value is 1.9 billion, which is a small amount compared to the volume of tenders announced. What does it mean? We have work to do,” said Biteko
“Some might say that special groups lack capacity; they are struggling. Who has the capability and hasn’t been built up? We must build their capacity. Once we build their capacity, they will become billionaires and pay tax passionately,” added Biteko.
Zanzibar to host biennial Commonwealth Law Ministers Meeting
Tanzania will host a biennial Commonwealth Law Ministers which gathers law ministers from the 56 common-wealth countries. The meeting is going to take place at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Zanzibar.
The meeting will have about 300 participants and is expected to be held from March 4 to March 8, 2024, . The theme for this year’s event is Technology and Innovation: How Digitalization Paves the Way for the Development of People-Centered Access to Justice.
The Host Minister, Dr. Pindi Chana who is Tanzania’s Legal and Constitutional Affairs Minister said that preparations are underway, seven committees have been formed involving other government departments and ministries to ensure smooth implementation of the event.
Tanzania will compete for two awards during this event, first the award for registration of under five years of age children and the award for legal aid provision, Tanzania will present its Mama Samia Legal Aid Campaign for this category.
Tanzania develops five-year strategy for protection of persons with albinism
Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office responsible with Labor, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disabilities, Joyce Ndalichako, said Tuesday the government has developed a five-year strategy aimed at protecting and improving the welfare of persons with albinism.
Prof Ndalichako announced the development when she held talks with the United Nations independent expert on the rights of people with albinism, Muluka-Anne Miti-Drummond, in the capital city of Dodoma.
Ndalichako told the UN expert that the strategy running from 2024 to 2028 entailed the provision of health services to persons with albinism, protection of their rights, and provision of education.
She said the government developed the strategy in collaboration with the Tanzania Albinism Association (TAS) and other stakeholders.
“The main objective of the strategy is to eliminate discrimination against persons with albinism,” said Ndalichako.
According to Mussa Kabimba, TAS national secretary general, Tanzania, with a population of approximately 16,000 people with albinism, witnessed a wave of killings and kidnappings of albinos beginning in 2006, driven by the belief that their body parts possess magical powers capable of bringing riches.
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