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ZA KISWAHILI

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A senior American envoy held discussions on wide-ranging issues on freedom of expression and constitutional reforms with officials of the Media Council of Tanzania (MCT).

Marissa Maurer First Secretary and Public Affairs officer at the US Embassy in Tanzania was first briefed on February 19, 2015 on the progress on the Right to Information, Media services, Freedom of the Press and the Constitutional changes by the Council’s Regulation and Standards Manager Pili Mtambalike.

She also met the Executive Secretary, Kajubi Mukajanga.

Mtambalike said the Council was quite satisfied by the way media freedoms were captured in the Constitution in articles 39 and 40 of the proposed constitution.

She elaborated that article 39 was specific on freedom of expression and article 40 was on freedom of information and independence of the media.

Mtambalike also up-dated the American diplomat on the promises made by the President of the United Republic of Tanzania on the enactment of the Right to Information legislation.

She said though the president had first promised the legislation would tableb before the parliament in April last year, it did not happen and it was not tabled in November last year and January this year as he had later promised.

Mtambalike said now there is a prospect that the bill on the legislation would tabled in April, this year.

Another bill that has not be been tabled is the Media Services bill, Mtambalike told Maurer.

Mtambalike also briefed her on the how the media is preparing for covering the general elections this year.

On her part the American diplomat expressed readiness to support for the realization of the legislations including to engage with the relevant ministries

On the general elections, Maurer also pledged readiness to support the Council on funding if it has any project on training in election reporting.

If the support will be realized, Mtambalike said this will be the first time the Council to receive such support from the Americans.

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