15 February 2016

Tanzania: New Rights Group Comes Aboard

Human rights activists have launched a coalition, Mama Ardhi Alliance, with the aim of advocating for the amendments of the existing laws which are still infringing upon women's rights denying equal access to ownership of land and property.

The alliance's chairperson, Ms Imelda Urio, said in Dar es Salaam over the weekend that the alliance would also be a vital platform to raise awareness on women's rights largely on land ownership.

She said that land ownership by women would speed up social development. "The alliance will also be creating awareness to its members on the proposed constitution. This will enlighten interest groups including women," said Ms Urio shortly after being appointed chairperson of the alliance.

The alliance which is under the coordination of Tanzania Women Lawyers' Association (TAWLA), is formed by ten Non-Governmental Organizations namely Legal and Human Rights Centre, Tanzania Media Women's Association, Tanzania Gender Networking Programme and Envirocare.

Others are Tanzania Home Economics Association, Women Legal Aid Centre, Women in Law and Development Africa, Women's Advancement Trust, Institute of Development Studies (Women Study Group) and National Organization for Children Welfare and Human Relief.

According to TAWLA Executive Director, Ms Tike Mwambipile, the alliance joined forces to advocate for gender equality in land and property ownership policies and practices in the country.

"Mama Ardhi played an instrumental role in successful efforts to ensure that provisions enshrining women's rights to land ownership were included in the new national Constitution, in October 2014," she said.

Ms Mwambipile pointed out that Mama Ardhi will be continuing to advocate for additional changes in policy and practice that will bring about real transformation for women, their children and society as a whole.

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