(Naole Media) – Tanzanian media are committed to promoting access to information thanks to a historic partnership with UNESCO. Since the advent of President Samia Suluhu, the country’s media have constantly called for an end to the censorship that was institutionalised under the reign of her predecessor, John Magufuli. Despite some timid but insufficient progress, Tanzania has finally taken a decisive step by signing a cooperation agreement with UNESCO to guarantee access to information for all citizens.
June 3 will go down in history as the day on which Tanzania sealed this historic partnership with UNESCO. The agreement was solemnly signed in Dar es Salaam by the Minister of Information, Nape Nnauye, and UNESCO’s representative in Tanzania, Michel Toto. The main aim of this partnership, which will run until 2027, is to support the Tanzanian government in establishing a regulatory framework conducive to the free flow of information.
Michel Toto, Unesco’s representative in Tanzania, stressed the importance of this collaboration, saying: « This cooperation strategy with the country will guide Unesco’s work in the communication and information programme, with a long-term vision to ensure that the United Nations’ technical cooperation meets the needs of Tanzanians as effectively as possible ». The Minister of Information, for his part, was optimistic, expressing the hope that this agreement would be the first in a series of other agreements aimed at strengthening resources and partnerships in favour of free, independent media and the promotion of critical thinking.
Since 2021, the Tanzanian media have continued to call for laws that are more favourable to press freedom at local level. Under the reign of John Magufuli, many media outlets have been forced to close down or go into exile to avoid repression. This new initiative therefore marks a major turning point in the history of the media in Tanzania and gives hope to all those who aspire to a free and open press in the country.
By signing this agreement with UNESCO, Tanzania is demonstrating its commitment to transparency and access to information for all. This ambitious partnership is an important step towards creating a dynamic media environment where journalists can exercise their profession in complete independence and where citizens can express their opinions without fear of reprisals. There are still many challenges ahead, but this collaboration between Tanzania and Unesco paves the way for a brighter future for freedom of expression in the country.