Tanzania: Don't Remain Silent On Attack, Journalists Told

JOURNALISTS in the country have been encouraged to share their experiences of how they are threatened, abused, intimidated or attacked, in efforts to protect their safety and profession.

This call was made by the legal experts at the one-day training on freedom of expression, press freedom, access to information, and reporting to journalists with the main objective of having a conducive working environment as required in various regional and international laws and conventions and ratified by our country.

At the meeting organized by the East Africa Law Society (EALS) in collaboration with Media Council of Tanzania (MCT) legal and media experts/ facilitators, they said evidence will help to understand the scale of threats and other violations of their rights, so as to struggle for freedom and justice.

However, facilitator Mr Fulgence Massawe - Director of Advocacy, Legal and Human Rights Centre urged journalists to know their boundaries of covering stories, especially respecting the existing laws in the country including constitution, media services Act, Cyber Act, etc. along with knowing conventions.

Programme Officer at Media Council of Tanzania (MCT) in charge of media monitoring, press freedom violation Mr Paul Mallimbo- shared some of the recorded incidents of threats and intimidations and attacks on Journalists in the country, adding that most journalists do not report work-related challenges.

"We are encouraged to quickly report any harassment and violation of your rights while on duty. Do not fear to report even on condition not to reveal your name. We have received reports of some journalists facing abuse and attacks, while going about their daily work - including being forcibly detained. Never remain silent," he said.

Ms Hawra Shamte (Media analysts) and Ms Shifa Said of the MCT, in separate presentations, encouraged students to read/study widely about laws governing their profession so that they are in a better position, not to easily fall into offences due to law ignorance.

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