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Tanzania suspends leading newspaper over currency report

In March 2017, Tanzania Civil society organizations launched a campaign calling on the government to guarantee freedom of expression from the press.

NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 28 – Tanzania has suspended the private owned Citizen newspaper for seven days for allegedly publishing false news on the weakening of the Tanzanian Shilling against the dollar over the last three years.

The Registrar of Newspapers Patrick Kipangula has accused the newspaper of failing to follow due procedure and financial standards set by the Central bank.

In a letter to the Citizen, Kipangula further said the decision to suspend the license temporarily is related to the newspaper also publishing a couple of misleading articles that are not aligned with the media ethics.

In March 2017, Tanzania Civil society organizations launched a campaign calling on the government to guarantee freedom of expression from the press.

The legal and Human Rights Centre claimed the government has denied the press freedom of expression and many journalists had fallen victims of selling the correct information to the public.

During the same period, Newspapers and magazines were required to have a new registration license that was also accompanied with a new code of ethics on which the journalists were expected to adhere to.

The new rules and regulations equally came with a lot of resentment from different media outlets.

Last year, Tanzania took position 93 in the worldwide study of 2018 World Press Freedom Index which was conducted by Pressure group Reporters Without Borders.

Several Newspapers in Tanzania have since 2015 either been shut down or suspended following new restrictive laws on freedom of expression by the government.

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