There was consensus that the constitution may have guarantees for
freedom of expression but that the reality on the ground is different. This is the reason why some freedom of expression activists
have called for the explicit guarantee of the freedom of the media
in the constitution.
There is a plethora of laws impeding the free flow of information,
which makes it difficult for the Tanzania media to operate. These
include the Directorate on Corruption and Economic Crime Act,
which bars the director from giving information on any person who
is being investigated.
Other such restrictive laws are the Public Service Act, Official Secrets Act and the National Security Act, all of which make accessing
information by journalists and the general public very difficult. All
these pieces of legislation could also lead to the media in Tanzania
practising self-censorship for fear of being on the wrong side of the
However the current government (which has been in office for only
8 months) seems to be keen on improving the situation by issuing directives to government officials to work very closely with the
press and make sure that people are informed of government activities. Repealing existing restrictive laws and conflicting articles in
the constitution will definitely be a great step forward towards the
achievement of freedom of expression.


Individual scores:

3, 3, 4, 3, 3, 2, 3, 3, 2, 2

Average score:


African Media Barometer - Tanzania 2006

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