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The Chanzo Morning Briefing Tanzania News – June 12,  2024

In our briefing today: Two weeks missing: Asiimwe Novath still not found as International Albinism Awareness Day approaches; Political heat on X (Twitter) forces ruling party supporters to call for an App ban in Tanzania, citing pornography; President Samia mourns Malawi Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima; Tanzanians in diaspora seek improved civic space to contribute to democratization at home

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Good morning! The Chanzo is here with a rundown of major news stories reported in Tanzania on June 11,  2024.

Two weeks missing: Asiimwe Novath still not found as International Albinism Awareness Day approaches

As International Albinism Awareness Day approaches tomorrow, June 13, 2024, marked with the theme “A Decade of Collective Progress,” the search for two-year-old albino girl Asiimwe Novath continues.

Asiimwe was abducted from her home on May 30, 2024, in Bulamula Village, Mbale Hamlet, Kamachumu Ward, Muleba District, Kagera Region. Initial promises from the Kagera Police Force had raised hopes that her whereabouts would be known within a few days, whether she was alive or not.

Various stakeholders, including the Tanzania Albino Society (TAS), have strongly condemned the abduction and announced their intention to request a meeting with President Samia Suluhu Hassan. TAS issued a statement in Dar es Salaam on June 5, 2024, addressing journalists about the incident.

This follows a similar condemnation by the Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC) on June 4, 2024, urging the government to take swift action.

Speaking to The Chanzo on June 10, 2024, Acting Regional Police Commander of Kagera, Yusuph Daniel, stated that the police had not yet found the child but that the investigation is progressing. He also mentioned that three people, including the child’s father, are in custody and being questioned. They will be sent to court once the investigation process is completed.

The incident has raised safety concerns for people with albinism, with stakeholders urging the government to implement protective measures from the local to the national level.

Political heat on X (Twitter) forces ruling party supporters to call for App ban in Tanzania, citing pornography.

In what appears to be a coordinated campaign, supporters of Tanzania’s ruling party have called for the banning of X, formerly known as Twitter, from the country. The calls were made during two press conferences on Tuesday, June 11, 2024, the first press was led by the youth wing of the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM) party.

“All platforms that distribute pornography have been banned in the country. It’s now time for our government to ban this platform as its content goes against our customs and tradition,” said Mohamed Ali Kawaida, Chairperson of the CCM youth wing.

Kawaida suggested that the platform’s rebranding from Twitter to X was a warning sign, claiming, “This platform was previously called Twitter but they have changed it to X. If you look at all those pornographic videos, the youth refers them as X. They are psychologically preparing us to see this term X as normal.”

X has become a crucial platform for political dialogue and activism in Tanzania. Many activists use it to criticize the government, and the presence of diaspora activists has intensified its role in political discourse. The platform’s influence has even prompted the government to alter its stance on various issues, earning it the nickname “Twitter Republic” among Tanzanians.

Read the full story here

President Samia mourns Malawi Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima

President Samia Suluhu has sent her condolences to the people of Malawi and President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera following the death of their Vice President, Saulos Klaus Chilima, in a plane crash on June 10, 2024.

“It is with great sadness that I have received the news of the tragic demise of the Vice President of the Republic of Malawi, the Right Honourable Dr. Saulos Klaus Chilima,” President Samia said in an X post. “On behalf of the Government and People of the United Republic of Tanzania, I convey our deepest condolences to His Excellency President Lazarus Chakwera, the people of the Republic of Malawi, family, and friends.”

The Vice President of Malawi and nine others died in a crash involving a Malawi Defence Force aircraft in the Chikangawa forest. Speaking to the media after the plane was found, President Lazarus Chakwera expressed the nation’s grief.

“The rescue team found the plane near the Chikangawa forest. It was discovered in a wrecked state with no survivors. All passengers on board have lost their lives,” he explained. “Words cannot express how heart-wrenching this is. I can only imagine the pain and sorrow that you all must be feeling at this time, along with the immense grief that will continue in the days and weeks ahead as we mourn this tragic event.”

The incident was reported on the evening of Monday, June 10, 2024, when communication was lost with the plane carrying the Vice President. The aircraft had departed from the capital city’s airport in Lilongwe at 3:17 AM Malawi time, heading to Mzuzu International Airport.

Dr. Chilima, 51, had been serving as the Vice President of Malawi since June 28, 2020, as part of a coalition of opposition parties led by President Chakwera. Sources in Malawi indicated that he was preparing to run for the presidential election next year.

This tragic event occurred just 22 days after the helicopter carrying the President of Iran, Ebrahim Raisi, crashed following landing difficulties, leading to his death on April 20, 2024. According to Iran’s National Television, the helicopter crashed near the city of Jolfa, on the border with Azerbaijan, after Raisi inaugurated a dam with the President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev.

Additionally, on April 18, 2024, a helicopter carrying the Chief of Defence Forces of Kenya, Major General Francis Ogolla, and nine other officers crashed and exploded in the Cheptulel area of West Pokot County. In that accident, five people, including Major General Ogolla, lost their lives.

Tanzanians in diaspora seek improved civic space to contribute to democratization at home

The name Mange Kimambi, a Tanzanian living in the United States, is not unfamiliar to many people using social media, especially Instagram and X, formerly Twitter.

Since 2016, Kimambi has gained significant popularity due to her criticism of government policies, starting with the previous administration under John Magufuli and now with his successor, Samia Suluhu Hassan.

While public opinions differ on the true motivations of her activism and her use of harsh and sometimes abusive language, many recall Kimambi’s historic move in early 2018 to organise anti-government protests in Tanzania while outside the country, which almost brought the country to a standstill, forcing the Magufuli Administration to deploy a significant number of riot police officers to prevent people from heeding Kimambi’s call.

The protests, now commonly referred to as Maandamano ya Mange in Swahili, or Mange’s Protests, never materialized but signified the role diaspora can play in supporting democratization efforts in their home country, a matter of critical debate within both activist and scholarly circles, not just in Tanzania but Africa generally.

Central to these debates, for instance, is the issue of legitimacy, whose supposed lack on the part of people living outside the country has been weaponized on numerous occasions by authorities and other bad-faith actors to delegitimize the diaspora as part of bigger efforts to silence them.

Read the full story here.

This is it for today, and we hope you enjoyed our briefing. Please consider subscribing to our newsletter (see left), 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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