4 May 2018

Tanzania: High Court Temporarily Suspends Content Regulations

The High Court Mtwara zone has issued a temporary injunction against the effecting of online content regulations. The injunction was issued on Thursday May 4, while the implementation of the new laws was set to begin May 5.

The High Court issued the injunction following a case filed by six organizations requesting for temporary injunction on April 30, 2018 The six organizations include: Legal and Human Rights Center (LHRC), Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition (THRDC), Media Council of Tanzania (MCT), Jamii Media, Tanzania Women's Media Association (TAMWA) and Tanzania Editors Form (TEF).

In the Primary case, the six organizations are asking the High Court to order revision the content regulations on that basis that they are against natural justice, freedom of expression, rights to be head and rights to privacy.

They also claim that the Minister of Information, Culture, Arts and Sports has gone ultra vires in setting them. Anna Rugaba, a commutation expert said that if implemented, the content regulations would deny journalism students from practicing on their own using online platforms, leaders from reaching their voters and general public from whistleblowing misconducts in their areas.

The Minister of Information, Culture, Arts and Sports is the first respondent, Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority is the second respondent while Attorney General is the third in the case which is set to be heard on May 10.

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