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TANZANIA GOVERNMENT INTRODUCES AND APPROVES FEES FOR BLOGGERS.

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Tanzania’s government has approved a law that will regulate content posted online, introducing fees for bloggers and online media in addition to policing morals and authenticity of social media users.

The regulation known as the Electronic and Postal Communications (Online Content) Regulations 2018, was initially published by the Tanzania Communications Regulatory Authority (TCRA) and came into effect during March 2018.

Under the new regulations, Tanzanians operating online radio stations and video (TV) websites, including bloggers will be required to apply for a licence, pay a licence fee upon registration as well as annual fees.

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With an application fee of 100,000 Tanzanian Shillings, an initial license fee of 1,000,000 Tanzanian Shillings and an annual license fee of 1,000,000 Tanzanian Shillings, Tanzanians have to pay up to $900 to operate a personal blog in the country.

The regulations give government the right to revoke a permit if a site publishes content that is considered to be ‘indecent, obscene, hate speech, extreme violence or material that will offend or incite others, cause annoyance, threaten, or encourage or incite crime, or lead to public disorder’.

Online content providers will also be required to remove ‘prohibited content’ within 12 hours or face fines not less than five million shillings ($2,210) or a year in prison.

The new regulations also require all Tanzanians with mobile devices to have a password (PIN) for locking their phones, with defaulters being fined up to 5 million Tanzanian Shillings (approximately $2,000) or 12 months imprisonment, or both depending on what the court decides.

Internet cafés and online platforms are also expected to install surveillance cameras to record and archive activities inside their business premises.

Despite TCRA holding public forums to discuss the draft document published in 2017 where various stakeholders raised objections, Dr. Harrison Mwakyembe, Tanzania’s Minister for Information, Culture, Arts and Sports, went ahead and signed the regulations into law.

“The registration requirements and the fees are likely to be a heavy burden for most bloggers and small-sized outlets streaming content in Tanzania, thereby reducing diversity in the media space in the process,” Angela Quintal, the Committee to Protect Journalists’ Africa program director said in an interview with Quartz Africa.

The government contends that the new regulations will help to put a stop to the “moral decadence” cause by social media and internet in the country. Social media has also been described as a threat to national security by some policy makers in Tanzania.

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South Africa: Ex-Mandela cop wins appeal against police minister

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Major General Andre Lincoln, a policeman chosen by then-president Nelson Mandela to head an elite presidential investigative unit, has won an appeal in a civil case against the police minister in the Western Cape High Court.



Lincoln confirmed on Monday that his appeal, which is related to at least 15 years of legal wrangling, had been successful.

It is not yet clear how Lincoln now plans to proceed with the matter.

The judgment found that Lincoln had not proved a malicious prosecution in terms of some of the charges, that of drunk driving and fleeing the scene of an accident.

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However, it said in terms of the remaining charges, which he was previously charged with in a regional court, his claims against the defendant succeeded with costs.

The Minister of Safety and Security was therefore ordered to pay Lincoln’s costs in the appeal, which included the costs of two counsel.

Lincoln previously claimed that he had been involved in highly sensitive investigations, including a suspected plot by cops to kill Mandela at his 1994 inauguration, which he claimed was “covered up”.

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He had also previously faced 47 criminal charges and was convicted of 17 of these in 2003.

Lincoln then appealed the conviction and was acquitted on all the charges.

He believed that, due to the critical investigations he was busy with, other senior police officers had set him up and had him criminally charged.

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Dozens die as mud destroys Uganda villages

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A landslide following heavy rains in eastern Uganda has killed more than 40 people.



It is feared that the death toll could rise as a government rescue team reaches the Mount Elgon area.

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A river burst its banks and a torrent of mud and water swept villages away. Pictures from the scene show people retrieving bodies from the mud and carrying them away.

People gather at the scene of a landslide in Bududa area in eastern Uganda,

A landslide in the same region, Bududa, killed more than 300 people in 2010.

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