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Tanzania: President Hassan’s first address signals more openness, but little concrete change

By Abdul Halim, in Dar es Salaam
Posted on Wednesday, 28 April 2021 16:27

Tanzania’s President Samia Suluhu Hassan first address to parliament on 22 April 2021 (twitter/ @SuluhuSamia)

President Samia Suluhu Hassan addressed for the first time the parliament in the administrative capital Dodoma on 22 Thursday, 2021 , but her address has attracted mixed opinions.

It was her first address since assuming office on 19 March following the sudden death of the late president John Magufuli.

Her inaugural speech looked at the upcoming trends and priorities the government will undertake, but with a warning to the nation: “We cannot in any way be taken back to the old dark days,” as she spoke about an end to corrupt public officers and their accomplices.

Protecting democracy

Under Magufuli’s leadership, Tanzania’s commitment to democracy and freedom of rights was increasingly being questioned. Opposition parties, political opponents and journalists were regularly silenced or threatened.