I hope you don’t mind me writing you a public letter like this. But it feels like the most appropriate way of saying what I want to say.
Because your decision to stop blogging has left me dejected. While I don’t always agree with what you say (I usually do), yours has been one of very few voices asking important but difficult questions. Those who find #UhuruWaKujieleza (freedom of speech) to be an annoyance (or, if we are charitable, an unaffordable luxury,) will be celebrating. We are all worse off as a result. Continue reading →
Tanzania’s freedom rating has dropped. The latest annual report by Freedom House on political rights and civil liberties around the world showed that Tanzania’s score dropped from 3.0 to 3.5. It’s may sound like only a small change, but the scale of these ratings only goes from 1 to 7. (1 is the most free, 7 is the least.) More significantly, it is the first time Tanzania’s rating has dropped for over 20 years.
This chart shows Tanzania’s rating for each year since 1994, just as multi-party democracy was being reintroduced. Continue reading →
The index gives each country a score between 1 and 100, representing the level of perceived corruption. (It is understandably difficult to measure actual corruption as it usually happens in secret). A higher score is better – ie. it means the level of perceived corruption is lower.
The two main contenders for the presidency in Tanzania’s forthcoming elections are now known. CCM chose John Magufuli as their nominee in mid July, after which Edward Lowassa switched sides and will run for president on the Chadema (and thus also UKAWA) ticket.
Bosses in parties have tried to stage-manage the nomination process to generate maximum publicity for their party and candidate. And in one sense they have both succeeded: the newspapers gave blanket coverage first to CCM and Magufuli, and then to Lowassa and Chadema/UKAWA.
But in this internet era, we can begin to compare how well the two campaigns have captured the interest of people online. Continue reading →
The big news story in Tanzania over the weekend was the nomination of John Pombe Magufuli as CCM presidential candidate, including the dramatic exclusion of Edward Lowassa from the final five. The Magufuli announcement came around midday on Sunday, so didn’t make the papers until this morning. So, with a bit of help from @millardayo, how did they cover it?
1. The more serious Swahili papers: (click on an individual image to enlarge)