Tanzanian govt bans Tanzania Daima newspaper

Wednesday October 25 2017

Tanzania Daima

Tanzania Daima tabloid that has been banned for 90 days for allegedly publishing false information. PHOTO | THE CITIZEN 

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The Tanzanian government has banned a Swahili daily newspaper, Tanzania Daima for 90 days for allegedly publishing false information.

The ban was announced by the government spokesperson Dr Hassan Abbasi, who is also the director of Information Services.

“The government has banned Tanzania Daima from publication for continuously publish false information,” he posted on his Twitter account.

Later, the Information Services department released a statement saying the decision was taken because of the publication's stories with false information.

The stories include one published in its Sunday edition on the number of Tanzanians on anti-retroviral drugs. The headline of the article stated that '67 per cent of Tanzanians are on ARVs'.

The newspaper acting editor Martin Malera told The Citizen in a telephone interview that the newspaper has received official communication from the government.

“We have received a letter at 3:36pm today (Tuesday) informing us on the decision,” he said.

Tanzania Daima becomes the fourth local newspaper to be banned from publication this year.

Others are Mawio, Mwanahalisi and Raia Mwema.

The government banned the critical newspaper MwanaHalisi in September for two years after accusing it of inciting violence. Another independent newspaper, Mawio, was banned in June over articles linking two former presidents to alleged improprieties in mining deals signed in the 1990s and early 2000s.

President John Magufuli warned in January that the days of newspapers his government viewed as unethical “were numbered” -- a statement that triggered concern about censorship.

-Additional reporting from Reuters