Thank you, Mr President,
The United Kingdom commends Tanzania for hosting large numbers of Burundian refugees and we welcome the credible and peaceful elections in October 2015. However, we note the use of the Cyber Crimes Act during the 2015 election to restrict freedom of expression, political parties and journalists and Tanzania’s inaction over long-called-for electoral reforms.
We are deeply concerned by the cancellation of the election in Zanzibar when it became clear the opposition was leading. We encourage Tanzania to establish an independent electoral commission for Zanzibar and mainland Tanzania, and to allow Presidential election results to be challenged.
The UK recommends that Tanzania:
- undertakes a thorough review with key stakeholders and civil society of its existing Cyber Crime and Statistic Acts and proposed Media Services and Access to Information bills, to meet human rights obligations.
- accelerates moves to end child and forced marriage, revises the 1974 Marriage Law Act, tightens legislation and enforcement to protect against Female Genital Mutilation, and in the process, collaborates with civil society organisations at community level..
Thank you, Mr President.