Tanzanian lecturer charged with insulting president on WhatsApp

2016-09-24 14:17
 John Magufuli. (File: AP)

John Magufuli. (File: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Dar es Salaam - A Tanzanian lecturer has been charged with insulting President John Magufuli in a WhatsApp message, a senior police official said on Friday, bringing the number of people charged under a tough new cybercrimes law to 10.

Magufuli, nicknamed "the bulldozer" for pushing through his policies, has won some praise from Western donors for anti-corruption drives and cutting wasteful government spending since coming to power in November.

But opponents accuse him of becoming increasingly authoritarian, undermining democracy by curbing political activity and restricting live television coverage of parliamentary sessions.

Insulting the president was made a criminal offense in Tanzania under a cybercrimes law passed last year, punishable by up to three years in jail, a fine of around $3 000, or both.

"The senior university lecturer was arraigned in court yesterday, and I think he was later released on bail," Julius Mjengi, police chief of the south-west Tanzanian town of Iringa told Reuters by telephone.

Police said the lecturer was charged with offenses under Tanzania's strict cybercrimes law. The lecturer denies the charges.

"The number of people who have been arrested across the country thus far for insulting the president has now risen to 10," Tanzanian newspaper Mwananchi said in an article on Friday.

Those who have faced trial for insulting Magufuli in recent months include students and opposition politicians.

A U.S. aid agency in March canceled nearly $500m of funding for Tanzania partly on concerns over enforcement of the new cybercrimes law.

The U.S. government's Millennium Challenge Corporation said Tanzania has "engaged in a pattern of actions inconsistent with MCC's eligibility criteria" hence the decision to suspend its partnership with the East African nation.

Read more on:    john magufuli  |  tanzania  |  east africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.