IFJ Calls for Prompt Probe into Killing of Journalist in Tanzania

The authorities in Tanzania must launch an immediate investigation into

the incident in which a prominent journalist, Daudi Mwangosi, was killed on

Sunday while covering an opposition political rally in a village of the Iringa region, south of the country. The

International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) made the call amid reports that the

journalist was assaulted by police officers and later struck by a tear gas as

police charged protesters.

 

“We are deeply shocked by this killing which robs a family and the

profession of a decent man and a courageous journalist,” said Beth Costa, IFJ

General Secretary. “The circumstances surrounding his death indicate that foul

play by Police should not be ruled out. That is why we urge the authorities to

leave no stone unturned in finding out why yet again a journalist had to lose

his life doing his work.”

 

According to the Eastern Africa Journalists Association (EAJA), an IFJ

affiliate, Daudi Mwangosi, who worked for Channel

Ten as a TV reporter, died after being struck by a tear gas as police

dispersed a crowd at a rally staged by an opposition political party, Chadema cha Demokrasia na Maendeleo (Party for Democracy and Progress) which was launching its new office.

 

Violence erupted after police asked people to disperse because rallies

and demonstrations had been “banned”. Police reportedly started to use tear

gas, one of which hit the Channel Ten journalist in the stomach as he was about 100 meters from the new Chadema office.  He died on the spot, EAJA reported. 

 

Eyewitnesses also said that the journalist was set upon by police

officers after he challenged them over the arrest of a fellow reporter at the

rally, according to local sources quoted by media. One photograph taken at the

rally and seen by the IFJ shows officers surrounding, their batons drawn,

Mwangosi who was on the ground.

 

The International Federation of Journalists says the role of the police

in this incident has to be investigated and has called on the Tanzanian

Government to rapidly put in place an independent commission of inquiry into

the death of Daudi Mwangosi to ensure that justice is done to Mwangosi. 

 

“The journalist fraternity can no longer accept the killing of

journalists with impunity, most especially from the reckless action of security

officers whose responsibility is to protect life and property,” added Gabriel

Baglo, Director of the IFJ Africa office. “The safety and security of

journalists must be seen as a top priority of governments and the Tanzanian

authorities can expect a relentless campaign to ensure no one is shielded from

accountability for our colleague’s killing.”

 

Mwangosi is the ninth media worker to be killed in this year in Eastern

Africa following eight media killings in Somalia.

 

 

For more information, please

contact IFJ on +221- 33 867 95 87

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IFJ represents more than 600.000 journalists in 134 countries