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Tanzania lifts ban on 4 newspapers

Tanzania stated Thursday it was lifting a ban on 4 newspapers and opening “a brand new chapter” with the media, as President Samia Suluhu Hassan makes an attempt to interrupt with a number of the insurance policies of her autocratic predecessor.

The Swahili-language newspapers, together with Daima — a day by day owned by jailed opposition chief Freeman Mbowe — had been banned between 2016 and 2020 through the authoritarian rule of former President John Magufuli.

“The intention of the present authorities is to create good relations with the media and as a begin, I’ll reissue licences of 4 newspapers,” Data Minister Nape Nnauye stated at a gathering with editors.

“Their punishment is sufficient.”

Mwanahalisi, a weekly newspaper, was shut after publishing a letter from a reader containing “insults” in opposition to Magufuli and his authorities.

Daima was banned simply earlier than the 2020 common election for allegedly flouting journalistic ethics.

Two different newspapers, Mawio and Mseto, had been suspended for reporting on authorities corruption.

Since Hassan took energy in March final yr, following Magufuli’s demise, she has sought to interrupt with a number of the insurance policies of her predecessor, who was nicknamed “Bulldozer” for his uncompromising management fashion.

She reached out to the opposition, vowing to defend democracy and fundamental freedoms, and reopened media retailers that had been banned underneath Magufuli.

However the arrest final July of Mbowe, the chief of the primary opposition occasion Chadema, on terrorism expenses dimmed hopes she would flip the web page on Magufuli’s rule.

Hassan’s authorities additionally slapped a two-week ban on Uhuru, the newspaper owned by the ruling Chama Cha Mapinduzi occasion, final yr after it revealed a front-page story claiming she was not contemplating operating for the presidency in 2025.

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However on Thursday, the knowledge minister stated Hassan was eager to create an “enabling atmosphere for the media.”

“She has directed me to fulfill the journalists, share our views and hearken to your issues to enhance the media atmosphere,” he stated.

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