The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today called on the authorities in Tanzania to investigate the killing of a radio journalist and to bring perpetrators to court.
"We strongly condemn the killing of journalist Issa Ngumba. The Government must investigate thoroughly the circumstances of his death and bring his killers to justice," said Gabriel Baglo, IFJ Africa Director. "His death murder is a troubling sign of violence targeting media which is creeping into the Tanzania, putting the safety of journalists in danger."
According to news reports and independent sources, Issa Ngumba, a 45- year old radio journalist who worked for a community radio station Radio Kwizera in western Tanzania, was found dead on January 8. He appeared to have been hanged by unknown assailants.
Sources said Mr. Ngumba's left arm had a deep bullet wound when his body was found dumped in a forest. A handgun and two cell phones were found near his body.
A doctor carrying out an investigation on the body confirmed that the journalist was shot on the arm before he was hanged. His body was found inside a mountain forest after three days of intensive search following his disappearance.
IFJ warned that the attacks on journalists in Tanzania risk dealing a serious blow to the country's reputation of tolerance and respect of human life. The murder of Issa Ngumba follows harassment and killing of journalists in less than six months.
On 4 December last year, journalist Shabani Matutu was shot and injured by police at his house in Dar-Es-Salaam, the capital and prominent journalist Daudi Mwangosi was killed while covering an opposition political rally in a village in the south of the country last September.
"Immediate action is needed now to prevent violence against media taking hold in Tanzania," added Baglo. "The threats to journalists are a tell sign of imminent danger to the democratic and open governance."
For more information, please contact IFJ on +221- 33 867 95 87
The IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries