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Tanzania prosecution convicts 34 over killing of albinos       

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzania’s Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) said on Thursday at least 34 people have been convicted of killing people with albinism in the country and sentenced to death by hanging during the period from 2006 to 2016.

“Several other cases of people accused of killing people with albinism are still pending in courts throughout the country,” Beatrice Mpembo, a State Attorney from the DPP told a two-day consultative meeting to strategize on countering brutality and killings of people with albinism.

She told the meeting organized by Tanzania Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG) in the political capital Dodoma that 67 cases of the killings of people with albinism were still pending in courts across the country.

Mpembo said her office has been facing difficulties in administering cases related to the killings of people with albinism and attacks on such people due to insufficient evidence.

“Most cases related to the killings of people with albinism involve some family members, as a result it has been difficult to get sufficient evidence due to lack of cooperation from the relatives thus contributing to delays in delivering ruling on the cases,” Mpembo said.

She said the worst of such killings was recorded in the east African country in 2008 where some 19 people with albinism were killed.

Ralph Meela, a senior police officer in charge of Offences Against Persons and Traffic Related Offences, said people with albinism or mothers with children born with the genetic disorder have been denied their rights.

“These people fail to take appropriate action because they lack awareness of their rights,” said Meela.

He said there was need to raise public awareness on the killings of people with albinism throughout the country because the police could not eliminate the problem single-handedly.

Killings of albinos have been driven by the belief advanced by some witch doctors that the body parts of people with albinism have properties that confer wealth and good luck.



Tanzanian government impounds over 6,000 cattle from Uganda

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- The Tanzanian government has impounded 6,648 heads of cattle from Uganda, a senior minister said on Thursday.

Luhaga Mpina, the east African nation’s Minister for Livestock and Fisheries, said in a statement the cattle were grazed into the country without following proper procedures.

Mpina ordered Misenyi district authorities in Kagera region to work on procedures for auctioning the cattle.

The minister said the grazing of such a huge number of cattle in Tanzania could lead to an environmental disaster.

“Unplanned grazing of cattle is most likely to destroy water sources, cause soil erosion and deplete our livestock grazing areas,” Mpina said in the statement.

He added that cattle from neighboring countries were likely to introduce animal diseases in the country.

“The government will never allow livestock from neighboring countries to graze in our land,” said Mpina.

Last month, Tanzanian authorities launched a 15-day nationwide crackdown on cattle from neighboring countries entering the country’s pastures.

Mpina made the announcement at the official launch of the crackdown in Mwanga, a district in northern Tanzania.

The crackdown aimed at identifying and seizing cattle penetrating into Tanzania from as Kenya and Uganda.

Following the launch of the operation, the government seized over 600 cattle from Kenya. The cattle were seized in the country’s northern region of Kilimanjaro.

According to the Ministry of Livestock and Fisheries, an estimated 30 percent of livestock pastures in the country are consumed by cattle from neighboring countries.


Road accidents in Tanzania decline by 48 pct in 3rd quarter

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian traffic police said Wednesday that road accidents in the East African nation declined by 48 percent in the third-quarter of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016.

Fortunatus Musilimu, the head of traffic police in the country, said road accidents between July and September went down by 1,264 from 2,639 recorded in the same period in 2016.

Musilimu said deaths and injuries caused by accidents also went down by 298 or 32 percent and 974 or 40 percent, respectively.

He attributed the decrease to efforts by the traffic police force in enforcing road traffic regulations and raising public awareness.

“We have been raising public awareness through various programs,” he told a news conference at the launch of the Road Safety Week.

Musilimu warned motorists who violated road traffic regulations saying legal action will be taken against them.

Musilimu invited all road users at a road safety campaign set to begin on Nov. 18 in the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

He said after the campaign traffic police force will not tolerate any traffic rules offenders.

“It is not our duty to educate drivers on roads, if they need education they have to attend the road safety week campaigns or visit our offices,” said Musilimu. 


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