13 September 2017

Tanzania: Investigations in Mdee's Case Complete, Prosecution Tells Court

INVESTIGATIONS into a trial of Kawe Member of Parliament (MP) Halima Mdee are complete, the court was told yesterday. The 39-year old politician stands accused of abusing President John Magufuli.

Senior State Attorney Mutalemwa Kishenyi, before Senior Resident Magistrate Victoria Nongwa at the Kisutu Resident Magistrate's Court in Dar es Salaam, asked for a date to conduct preliminary hearing.

The magistrate granted the request and adjourned the case to October 11, 2017. During the preliminary hearing session, the prosecution is expected to give more particulars, showing how the lawmaker under Chama Cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Chadema) ticket committed the offence.

In the case, the prosecution alleges that Mdee committed the offence on July 3, this year, at Chadema headquarters along Ufipa Street in Kinondoni District in the city. She is alleged to have in sulted the President of the United Republic of Tanzania, the act which, according to the prosecution, was likely to cause breach of peace.

Before her arraignment, the opposition lawmaker was locked up following an order by Kinondoni District Commissioner (DC) Ally Hapi, for inflammatory statements against the President.

The DC was quoted as saying that as the Chairman of the Peace and Security Committee in the district, he had ordered the law enforcers to arrest Mdee and hold her for interrogation for not less than 48 hours before further legal measures.

DC Hapi derived his powers from some provisions in the Regional Administration Act that empowers Regional Commissioners (RCs) and District Commissioners (DCs) to order confinement of citizens for 48 hours.

Ordering Mdee's detention, Mr Hapi told reporters that his district is not a place for politicians to utter inflammatory statements against government leaders and abuse the president.


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