18 June 2017

Tanzania: Human Rights in Isles Need Improvement, Says Judge

Zanzibar — Although there have been noticeable achievements in respect to human rights in the country, the Chairperson of the Zanzibar Laws Review Commission, Judge Mshibe Ali Bakari, said more should be done to make the Islands a better place for all to live.

"There are many incidents of violation of human rights committed by ordinary people and leaders, yet most of the cases are under-reported or neglected by the media and not included in research reports," Judge Bakari said during the launching of the Human Rights Report (2016).

At the event organised by the Zanzibar Legal Services Centre (ZLSC), Mr Bakari was critical of NGOs for not highlighting some of the most disturbing violation of human rights in their reports.

"Many people think that violation of human rights is only committed by security forces, but provision of poor services in offices including bad reception to customers, mob justice and lack of charity to the needy are some of the violation of human rights commonly committed by ordinary people," he stressed in his speech before unveiling the report.

He said that all people, groups and institutions have a great role to play in ensuring human rights are observed and respected regardless of position, race, religion, and economic differences.

He appealed to the law enforcers and leaders not to think that they have the mandate to abuse people or violate human rights because of their position, urging the media and NGOs to expose and promote justice in the islands.

Giving the summary of the report (Zanzibar Chapter), Mr Thabit Abdalla Juma, a lawyer from ZLSC said there have been recorded achievements in respect to human rights, mainly minimising delays in hearing cases.

"It is unfortunate that murder, depriving people's lives, has been increasing through road accidents and mob justice, killings by individuals and abuse of children. We need to join forces to stop the social menace," noted Mr Juma.

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