Cybercrime, Z’bar concerns freeze aid cash

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania -   2014-12-12  USD and TZS  in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, on December 12, 2014.   Photo by Daniel Hayduk

$472 million USD in financial aid has been frozen due to the cybercrime act and the nullification of elections in Zanzibar. Photo: Daniel Hayduk

The Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) has decided to defer $472 million USD (nearly 1 trillion TSH) in financial aid pending the resolution of governance concerns.

“The nullification of election results in Zanzibar halted an otherwise orderly and peaceful electoral process. The use of the Cybercrimes Act of 2015 during the elections to arrest individuals accredited by the National Electoral Commission inhibited fundamental freedoms of expression and association,” says US Ambassador Mark Childress.

The MCC says Tanzania’s eligibility to receive the funds will be decided once ‘relevant governance concerns’ have been addressed.

Chief Secretary Ombeni Sefue says he believes Tanzania has met all the MCC’s qualifications ‘unless they have changed the goalposts.’

“MCC has been encouraged by newly-elected President Magufuli’s recent steps to strengthen the fight against mismanagement and corruption, and hopes those efforts will continue and result in systemic change … The Board may revisit Tanzania’s eligibility over the course of 2016,” says Childress.

A decision to provide financial aid for Lesotho was also deferred on December 16.

Read more: Corruption control frees up financial aid


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