Stories that will get you inspired to join hands in supporting more Tanzanians to access justice
The constitution of Tanzania guarantees equality before the law and equal protection before the law as provided for under Article 13(1). Access to justice emanates from human rights standards that require for there to be equality for all before the law, the right to be treated fairly by any tribunal among others.
The right of the people of Tanzania to access justice is faced with myriad challenges. These challenges are either systemic or in some cases they are structural. Some of the challenges emanate from those who are supposed or are seeking to access justice, others from those who are dispensing or are supposed to dispense justice and allied services.
LHRC work is centred on ensuring that all people regardless of their status have full access to justice and their basic Human Rights are respected. This has been very fruitful from the collaboration with our stakeholders including development partners, government and its institution and other friends of Human rights.
Our work ranges from public empowerment using media, paralegals, and specific trainings according to the need to advocating for sound legal reforms to be human rights sensitivity through rigorous legal analyses monitoring of Human rights situation and responding to the human rights violation. In the year 2020, we shaded lights to unprivileged individuals and families whose rights could never have been realized in absence of such support.
Since we cannot put each story here, this article depicts some of the featured stories that were documented among many Tanzanians who benefited from our legal aid services and support.
It is our pleasure that you will enjoy reading these stories from our beneficiaries and be inspired either to join hands in supporting more Tanzania to access justice or get inspired that access to justice is possible and we should stand together for A justice and equitable society.
A Human Rights Club Alumnus Establishes A Cbo And A Paralegal Unit In Singida
Enold is a 28-year-old young man who pioneered the establishment of a human rights club at the University of Dar es Salaam College of Education (DUCE) in May 2016. Under the mentorship of LHRC, the human rights club members, including Enold, enhanced their skills and knowledge of legal and human rights issues.
By 2017, the club had 1500 members. After finishing his University studies, Enold went back to his home village in Singida Region, where he established an organization called Gender Development Focus (GDF) in August 2019. The organization seeks to advance women’s rights. In 2020, he established a paralegal unit to enhance access to justice in the region and assisted another paralegal unit to register under the Legal Aid Act of 2017. His paralegal unit is called Wasaidizi wa Kisheria Singida and it has been fully registered.
Human Rights Clubs Instilling A Culture Of Justice At The Community Level
In July 2020, we launched a total of 77 clubs in all primary and secondary schools in the district to help children understand their basic rights and claim their rights when they are threatened and/ or infringed. Few months after launching human rights clubs in Bagamoyo, we have witnessed the success of the program in an unpredicted manner. Flora Warioba (District social welfare officer) played a very important role in the establishment of human rights clubs in Bagamoyo.
“In the first three months of its establishment, the human rights clubs program has proved to be very important in our district (Bagamoyo). There are so many positive changes that have taken place in this period; first, the program has brought closer all actors responsible for the protection of children. Now, it is easy for officers from different departments to communicate and collaborate in addressing issues affecting children,” said Flora.
Flora told our team that as a social welfare officer who is directly responsible for the protection of children in her district, the program has eased her work in various ways, including the delivery of education to parents and children as well as in following up on children abuse incidents.
“As a social welfare officer, it is now much easier to reach out to children in schools because I am in contact with teachers from all schools. I can now reach and empower children and parents through human rights club sessions and parents’ school meetings. The program has stimulated children to report human rights violations, especially to their clubs’ guardians because they feel safer with them. This has made it easier to deal with child abuse because all responsible authorities are involved and play their part in addressing the problem,” added Flora.
Flora told our team that the program has linked schools with the juvenile court in the district which has to a large extent helped in the correction of children in conflict with the law and it has given children direct access to authorities which makes them feel safer to report abuses.
“To be honest if it were not for this program the situation would have been worse. All the children that have come up and reported would have not been protected,” added Flora
Patron of a human rights club at Kizuiani Primary School, Juma Machenga told our team that the club meets on Wednesday every week whereby club members are empowered on laws and human rights through presentations, plays, songs, and poems. Machenga told our team that he is happy to have acquired knowledge on laws and human rights through training by LHRC which he is using to empower children at Kizuiani Primary School.
“I was neither aware of laws affecting children’s rights nor children’s rights before attending your (LHRC) seminar. Now I am happy to have acquired the knowledge and I am passing it to pupils and colleagues at Kizuiani Primary School and the surrounding community,” said Machenga.
Machenga told our team that the establishment of the human rights club at Kizuiani Primary School has brought significant changes to pupils, teachers, parents, and the community at large. He said that as a result of the establishment of human rights clubs children are reporting human rights violations both at school and home and the school is playing its part in ensuring children are protected from abuse.
“This program is a game-changer not only for our school but also for Kizuiani community members at large. There was a huge knowledge gap on actions that amount to child abuse among children and community members. We are happy that, pupils are now aware of their rights and they are taking action by reporting abuse happening at school and their homes. Recently, after several human rights sessions, one female pupil came to me and reported threats of sexual abuse by her uncle,” said Machenga.
“Issues of child abuse require the attention of many responsible authorities and now that we have been linked through this program it has become easier to address the matters. Before this program, I can say we were working in silos, but now we are working as a team when it comes to addressing issues affecting children,” said Machenga.
Machenga made a call to LHRC to ensure that we train more teachers at all schools citing reasons such as the transfer of teachers, which can affect the sustainability of human rights clubs. Raya Rashid - a 12-year-old standard seven pupil, was among the human rights club members who shared their views on the impact of the human club's programme on their lives. Raya who is the chairperson of the Kizunguni Primary School Human Rights Club told our team that she has witnessed increased awareness and behaviour change as a result of knowledge acquired from the human rights club.
“I can say that my fellow pupils and I have learned a lot about children’s rights and how to protect ourselves and deal with childhood abuse when it happens. This has helped in the reduction of incidences of harassment in school and now pupils are opening up about abuses because they know what entails abuse,” said Raya.
Our team asked Raya how she feels to be a leader of the Kizuiani Human Rights club given that she is a girl. Raya said she feels so good, and her family is so proud of her for the position.
“Honestly, I feel so good and privileged as a girl child to be a leader and not only to lead but for the chance to create awareness to fellow pupils on their basic rights. When I shared the news of my election as a leader of our human rights club, my parents were so excited to see their daughter becoming a leader,” said Raya.
Raya told our team that as a club leader she is expecting to enrol more members so that more pupils become aware of their rights.
“Our club is new, but it is so active and vibrant because most of the topics that we learn are very relevant to our daily lives. We are looking forward to enrolling more club members and consequently enhance pupils’ understanding of their rights,” added Raya.
Bagamoyo District is a good example of how human rights clubs are bringing about positive change in Tanzania. The program is worth scaling up to reach all schools in the country. We pledge to collaborate with you [LHRC] in this human rights clubs programme to ensure children understand their basic rights and enable them to protect themselves against all forms of violence against children. As Bagamoyo District Council, we shall incorporate this programme into our budget and work plan and support the programme to ensure our children and youth at school and home are protected from acts of violence and build a strong nation and a community that is aware and respects human rights.” Bagamoyo District Executive Director, Ms. Fatuma O. Latu.
Champion Of Change Fighting Sexual Harassment In High Learning Institutions
Magdalena Limi is a champion of change who have risked her future to fight against sexual harassment at St. Augustine University in Mwanza. Magdalena was enrolled as an undergraduate at St. Augustine University in 2015 perusing a bachelor’s degree in Procurement. Her fight begun on 20th January 2017 in her second year at the University when a lecturer asked for her phone number so that he could share classes updates. Magdalena told our team that contrary to agreements, the lecturer started to poke her with other issues. The lecture asked her out, but Magdalena was not ready to succumb to his intentions. Unfortunately, the more Magdalena tried to avoid the lecturer the more the lecturer kept on insisting on his intentions. According to Magdalena, she did everything she could to avoid him including blocking his number, but the lecturer kept on following her.
“I blocked his number but he did not stop, he sent my friends to convince me and used another number to reach out to me. He was calling and texting me frequently asking me out during the nighttime. He did neither care about my position as a student nor cared about my choice,” said Magdalena.
When the lecturer realized that Magdalena was certain about her decisions, he started to use his position to intimidate and harass her in front of the class and even in exam rooms. When he learnt that I was not going to accept his proposals he was aggrieved and started to send me abusive messages saying that I am nothing, I am not the only girl at the university, I have an ugly face, elderly and I am the dumbest student in the class. As if that was not enough he threw abusive words at me in front of the class and during the exams.
Magdalena told our team that the situation worsened during the second semester of her last year of studies in 2018. During this time, he was teaching them one of the courses and I was a class representative. I had confronted him severally with bold messages showing that I was not afraid of his intimidations. He continued with his behaviour and this time he made sure I do not pass his course. I failed his course and I had to go back for supplementary which I failed again and that’s why I could not graduate till today.
Magdalena said that all that time that she was put through the harassment, she had reported the matter to the university’s administration, but no action was taken against the perpetrator.
“I reported the matter to the administration but there was no action taken against him. I was so disappointed that the only positive feedback I got from the administration is that they are investigating the matter and they will take action upon finding the truth. Some of the lecturers that I sought advice from dared to advise me that I should try and cope with him because if I do otherwise, he will fail me in my studies,” said Magdalena.
But what encouraged Magdalena to fight this lone battle that many fail? Our team was interested to learn about Magdalena’s boldness and persistence against constant harassment. Magdalena told our team that she was confident that she was doing the right thing for herself and other victims of sexual harassment at the university.
“First of all, I believe in consent as a foundation of any relationship. I did not like the fact that somebody could just want to enforce his decisions on me. Secondly, I did not want to end up another victim of sexual harassment and see the cycle of violence rolling against other young girls. I promised myself that my case should be a wake-up call to the fellow girls to fight for their rights and authorities to pay attention to the matter,” said Magdalena.
What challenges did Magdalena face as she resisted sexual harassment? The battle was not easy for Magdalena since she was fighting on an unfair battlefield. She was failed by the perpetrator, so she could not graduate. She was isolated by friends who were afraid of circumstances involving her, she suffered psychologically due to abusive language used by the lecturer against her. Despite all that, she did not concede to the hands of abusers.
How LHRC helped her? Together with her boldness and courage, when we came across the story of Magdalena on social media, we reached out to her and helped her report her case to the responsible authorities.
Magdalena calls for academic institutions and other responsible authorities to support girls who are fighting against sexual harassment. Magdalena insists that when girls come out and speak up against gender-based violence, authorities should not compromise girls’ rights for the sake of protecting the reputation of individuals or institutions and leave girls.
Human Rights Monitors Helps Marginalized Girl To Access Justice
The story of Leah (not real name) a 10 years standard four girl child at Mgindo village in Ulanga district, Morogoro region is the reality that many children face in Tanzania. Leah was raped by a man known as Afrika Kachewa aged 37 years old. Africa was treated as a family member by Leah’s family because he had rented a place from the family where he established a cereal milling machine. According to Leah’s grandfather, Mr Paulo Likunda the day Afrika raped Leah was an evening in which a family dinner had been served for them. Unexpectedly Afrika disappeared with an excuse that he was going to pick peppers outside. Mr Likunda went on explaining that Afrika disappeared for so long and when he got back he had no clear explanations as to why he was late.
“I remember that evening, we were served with dinner as usual. Afrika left for peppers outside but it took so long to the extent that I had to leave others eating and go outside looking for him. I searched for him with no success until he got back but with no reasonable explanations. As I was reacting to his delay, I heard women yelling while mentioning his Name, Afrika, Afrika. I was confused and run out asking what is going on just to hear Leah’s mother shouting Afrika is abuser, he has abused my child. I was so disappointed to learn that all that time I was looking for the guy he was busy raping my granddaughter and because of noises from the milling machine we could not hear cries from my granddaughter,” Mr Likunda told our team.
Our team asked Leah’s mother about what happened to her daughter and she responded by saying that her daughter was taking a shower in a bathroom outside the house and when she got back she was complaining that Afrika did something bad to her. “I remember it was on 20th March 2020 around 19:30, my daughter went to the bathroom and I was in the kitchen when Mr Likunda came asking for Afrika. Over a sudden, my daughter came back crying and complaining that Africa had done something bad to her. I cried and yelled for help, neighbours and people at the milling machine helped arrest Afrika and take him to the village executive office,” she explained. “At the village executive office, he confessed to having raped my daughter and pleaded with village leaders for the matter to be settled but they denied, and the matter was taken forward to the Mahenge police station. My daughter was taken to hospital and a medical report proved that she was raped. Afrika was brought to court and on 7th September 2020 he was found guilty and sentenced to 30 years of imprisonment,” added Evelina.
She also said that at some point the family of the perpetrator had approached their family with a bribe so that they could compromise but because of the legal assistance they received from our monitor they could not accept. Evelina calls for members of the community to stand firm so that they can stop the cycle of violence against children. When she was asked about the wellbeing of her daughter, Evelina said, Leah is now recovering from the trauma that she was put through. “To a large extent, the incident disturbed my daughter mentally and physically. Physically I can say she has recovered after undergoing medical treatment but psychologically I cannot say she is stable yet because she has dropped in class. Nevertheless, I am glad her situation is generally improving,” said Evelina.
Leah’s grandfather, Mr Likunda stood as one of the witnesses in court defending her granddaughter against his friend Afrika. When our team asked about his drive to defend her granddaughter, Mr Likunda insisted that he felt so bad for what happened to her granddaughter and the only way he could help her was for him to testify before the court.
“I felt so bad to see someone I trusted and respected destroying the life of an innocent young girl. I could not think of a compromise. The only thing I could do to bring justice to my granddaughter was to stand and testify in court. I am happy justice was served to her and she now recovering from the tragedy,” said Mr Likunda “I urge everyone in the society to play part in protecting the rights of the child,” insisted Mr Likunda.
Exceptionally Mr Likunda thanked the government and our monitor in Ulanga for the support they provided to his family in making sure the abuser is held into account for his action. Likunda family was supported by our Human Rights Monitor in Ulanga who closely followed up all the stages of the case to make sure the family does not back off.
Justice For Victims Of Sexual-Based Violence
Rehema - a seven years old girl child from Mahenge, Ulanga district in Morogoro region was in May 2020 raped and forced to remain silent for a couple of days because of intimidations from the perpetrator. Rehema lost her mother and she lives with her aunt known as Salome Peter. Rehema was raped by a 40 years old Man known as Mudi Manywele. She endured severe pain which she tried to hide as a result of the intimidations she received from Manywele.
Rehema's aunt who is also a close guardian to her told our team that Rehema was playing with her female friend when Manywele forceful took Rehema to the bush where he molested her. According to Salome, Manywele threatened to kill Rehema in case she told anyone about the incident.
“In the morning after the incident, I noticed that Rehema was not okay but when I asked her she pretended that she was okay. She went to school but she could not finish a day at school. She came back and said she had been permitted from school to go for a medical checkup because she was feeling unwell. I took her to the hospital where she was diagnosed with malaria. She took the antimalarial dose but the situation worsened. I decided to do a thorough check of her body just to find out that her private parts had been destroyed,” said Salome.
After finding out the truth about Rehema's situation, Salome reported the incident to the police and legal proceedings started. Many were arrested and charged with child molestation. Salome told our team that even under the watch of police Rehema was afraid to touch Manywele until she was assured that he could not kill her because he was under arrest.
The incident affected Rehema psychologically. Her aunt told our team that in her first days Rehema could not sleep properly she used to scream while asleep. “This incident has affected Rehema so much, she is not the same,” said Salome. The story of Rehema is so disturbing to hear, her family connect the incident with superstitious beliefs. The molester worked with Rehema’s father as a miner in Ulanga graphite mining area. According to Salome, miners in the area believe in witchcraft which deceives them to such unexpected incidents. On the other hand, the family of the perpetrator tried to manipulate the outcome of the legal processes. Salome told our team that Manywele family members tried to bribe her and Rehema's father with money but they turned it down. Salome also confessed to have passed through difficult times especially at times when the perpetrator was released on bail.
“I remember his (Manywele) family members approaching me and Rehema's father with a bunch of money not less than two million for us to drop the case. Despite our poverty, we could not go for money and risk our daughter's life. I was also threatened by the perpetrator when he was released on bail but with the support from your (LHRC) monitor, I remained strong till the end,” Salome told our team.
Seven months later the case was concluded, Manywele was found guilty of child molestation and sentenced to 30 years of imprisonment. Salome and Rehema's father is thankful for the support they received from the justice administrators and our human rights monitor in Ulanga district.
Champions Of Change Standing Against Child Molestation: A Story Of Valestina In Njombe Region
The story of Valestina Mkorongo whose 10-year-old daughter was molested by her husband is proof that many children are victimized and remain prey to sexual abusers because family members choose to compromise the best interest of the child and side with abusers. When her husband kicked her out and started molesting his daughter, Valestina did not remain silent, she fought back. She resigned herself to losing her marriage and facing isolation from the family and society for the sake of ensuring justice is served and her daughter is protected from all forms of violence.
“I don’t know what happened to my husband. As a family, we enjoyed our marriage and we were blessed with five children (two boys and three girls). All over a sudden, he started hating on me, torturing and chasing me out of our house. He said he wanted to remain with children alone and he stopped providing for the family,” Valestina told our team.
Valestina told our team that her husband abandoned her in 2018 while she was pregnant leaving her to sleep outside the house and sometimes in the bathroom.
“I wasn’t allowed to sleep inside the house, instead, I had to sleep outside in the kitchen and sometimes in a bathroom. My husband slept with the kids in our sleeping bed, he took them out for food and sometimes bought ready-made food only for him and the children. He did everything to make sure I lose my calm and leave but I stayed,” said Valestina.
“Few weeks after my husband started to sleep with our children in the same room, as a mother I noticed that our older daughter was not the same. My daughter had started to change in behaviour, I noticed she had no respect for me anymore. Even when I asked her about what is going on between her and her father, she shortly said nothing is going on and she did not want to explain,” said Valestina.
After Valestina noticed unusual behaviour from her daughter she started monitoring her and she eventually found out that all that time she was being molested by her father. Valestina said she was so disturbed to learn that her daughter had been damaged to the extent that she could not walk properly but she could not ask his husband because she was afraid, he would beat him. Valestina said, she approached her in-laws to seek their wisdom in addressing the matter but her husband was not willing to. Despite intimidations from her husband Valestina did not give up, this time she approached spiritual leaders at the church where Valestina and her husband used to worship.
“The day after a meeting with church leaders he got so angry at me, he attacked me and beaten me heavily. I reported the matter to a ten-house representative who advised me to report the matter to the police. I did everything I could do trying to reconcile with my husband and save my daughter from the tragedy but all the efforts were unsuccessful even though my husband confessed to have molested our child,” explained Valestina.
One day Valestina decided to go to a school where her daughter was studying to follow up on the progress of her daughter. Valestina was shocked to hear from teachers that her daughter had changed a lot, teachers told Valestina that her daughter turned a deaf ear and she was stinking so they had to alienate her from the rest of the pupils in a class. Teachers called Valestina’s husband but he disobeyed.
“The turning point to all that I and my daughter had been through arrived when my husband filed a case falsely accusing me of attacking my daughter. I was taken to the police station where I was locked up in police remand with my one-year-old child.
Unbounded: Action On Violence Against Women In Kigoma
In April of 2019, Twaweza and our partners heard about a gruesome phenomenon in Kigoma Urban, dubbed Teleza. Gangs of young men roam neighbourhoods, covered in grease or ‘dirty oil’. They break into women’s houses and rape them on the threat of injury, often from machetes, if they resist. There is no discrimination or sympathy: pregnant women, those fresh from giving birth, older women, children, all are potential victims. The main criteria are to be living without a man in the house.
The women are subject to horrific violence. Then when they report these incidents, they are mocked and belittled by police, forced to part with money for fake charges by hospital and police alike. This issue was raised as part of the animation process in Kigoma-Ujiji. The process requires young women, young men, older women and older In April of 2019, Twaweza and our partners heard about a gruesome phenomenon in Kigoma Urban, dubbed Teleza. Gangs of young men roam neighbourhoods, covered in grease or ‘dirty oil’. They break into women’s houses and rape them on the threat of injury, often from machetes, if they resist. There is no discrimination or sympathy: pregnant women, those fresh from giving birth, older women, children, all are potential victims. The main criteria are to be living without a man in the house. The women are subject to horrific violence. Then when they report these incidents, they are mocked and belittled by police, forced to part with money for fake charges by hospital and police alike.
This issue was raised as part of the animation process in Kigoma-Ujiji. The process requires young women, young men, older women and older men to first identify issues in their groups before coming together to agree on shared priorities. Women in Mwanga Kusini ward raised the issue of Teleza as a major problem that had been going on for several years, at least as far back as 2014/15.
Although from the outset, there seemed to attempt to downplay the issue, to talk of it as pastor to blame the women themselves, our partner Tamasha was not to be deterred. In three days of investigation, they uncovered 45 cases spanning from 2016 to this year.
Although other actors have attempted to address Teleza, they have met with little success. Even from early on, it was as if there was strong resistance from the local authorities.
One of the core hypotheses of Twaweza’s 2019-2022 strategy is that these types of localised issues, raised in our work to demonstrate citizen agency, can provide fodder for national action and change: to address unresolved long-term local problems; to identify issues that might be more widely felt; and to use locally identified issues with widespread resonance to push for systemic changes in policies, laws or practice.
Teleza provided an important opportunity to tackle an urgent issue using this model. We quickly convened a coalition of organisations including ourselves, Tamasha, ChangeTanzania, JamiiForums, Centre for Strategic Litigation, Legal and Human Rights Centre. Over time the coalition expanded as new actors were moved to come on board.
Our first step was to write a letter to and meet with the Minister of Home Affairs. The letter was copied to regional and local authorities in Kigoma as well as other relevant national government institutions.
While giving the government time to respond, we organised our documentation of the cases including video and audio testimonials and photos. We also identified a survivor, Ramla Issa, who was willing to tell her story. Two weeks after the letter was sent, we held a press conference where she shared her story and we shared our specific calls to action. Ramla continued to press leaders and engage with the media. In this way, we also amplified citizen’s voices into national spaces as per Twaweza’s second mission area.
The story began to take up a life of its own. Other organisations and individuals began demanding action, moved by the suffering these women had endured for so long and the lack of action from the government. International media were following up alongside national media. Perhaps the strongest reaction came on social media: individual citizens added their powerful voices to the calls for a response.
And government machinery began to respond. A first there was denial, anger at the ‘noise-makers. But we persisted. The issue was raised in parliament: an irate minister was calmly told by the chair of parliament to give the issue the attention it deserved Meanwhile, in Kigoma, a high-level local leader was initially sceptical but conducted some house visits. After holding community meetings with women survivors, he became a champion for the cause, emphasising the need for perpetrators to be caught, the zero-tolerance policy of authorities to these crimes. National leaders acted too: they visited the area and emphasised the need for local action.
The women themselves, and community mobilisers continued to play important roles, galvanising local support. Ultimately, nine perpetrators including a ringleader were arrested and prosecuted. Religious leaders became engaged and took the issue up. There were months with no cases.
But almost one year later, the situation remains fragile. Cases are beginning to occur again. The ringleader who was arrested was released for lack of evidence. The local authorities are angry and want no mention of Teleza, all local organisations and researchers working on the issue have been told not to do so.
We continue to plan new ways of supporting these women and reviewing our work so far: we learnt important lessons about what we did well:
• Compelling and diverse, high-quality evidence
• Democratising the campaign, having no ownership so others could run with the issue
• Ensuring that the national campaign was complemented with local engagement
• The importance of champions within and outside government
But we also learnt that there were things we could have done better. In particular, our initial engagement with local and regional authorities was not strong enough. We circumvented some steps within the security architecture that created negativity. Moving forward we will need to balance carefully between the urgency of the issue and the protocol required.
Nonetheless, we believe that we acted responsibly to push for justice for these women. As we continue with our animation work, we are finding that violence against women genuinely is a nationwide issue although it takes many forms and guises. And so we will explore bringing our national advocacy and engagement capacity to bear to try and secure broader change to help protect all women in Tanzania.
Journalist To A Human Rights Activist
Mr Peter Saramba, a journalist from Mwananchi Communications based in Mwanza attended two different Journalist pieces of training conducted by LHRC in Mwanza and Geita. He was the chairperson representing other Journalists as their leader during the training. He testified that before the pieces of training, he would engage and report on Human Rights issues without knowing but after the training he has recognized that he is the key stakeholder of LHRC in reporting Human Rights issues. He has also learned the best ways of avoiding risks when doing his work as a Journalist with regards to investigation and reporting of Human Rights Issues.
He can now write good stories by practising Investigative Journalism on Human Right Issues. In August 2020, Mr Peter Saramba wrote a story in Mwananchi News Paper using Investigative Journalism on “why School Girls studying in Wards’ Government Schools get pregnancies”. In his story, he cited some reasons like parents not being responsible for monitoring students’ progress and hiring of rooms for Girls’ Students while at School as Hostels. The girls end up having unlimited freedom by staying alone in hired rooms and get at risk of getting pregnant.
At the end of his story he came up with proposed solutions like Parents should engage themselves fully in making follow up on their daughters’ progress at Schools. They should also create a more conducive environment for their children when attending their classes at Schools. A joint effort between parents and teachers will help to reduce the risks of girls getting pregnant while at School.
How A Paralegal Changed A Woman’s Life In Lindi
Mrs Fatuma Omari, a resident of Rupota Village, in Nachingwea District got married and stayed with her husband for 3 years. They were cash nuts farmers who used to share their resources after selling cash nuts. In 2019, they sold their cash nuts and got a Lumpsum of Tsh. 800,000. After getting their money, the husband decided to withhold all the money and decided to chase his wife and married another woman. The divorced wife did not get anything from their sales regardless of their previous joint efforts with her husband to build a house. After being chased from home, the wife engaged the parents of both sides trying to resolve the issues. Her efforts did not work instead she ended being bitten by her husband and got wounded which made her go to report her case to Police Station. The police Officer-in-charge advised her to go back and resolve the issues with her husband regardless of the wounds and pain she had experienced after being bitten.
The paralegal member from Lindi kept on following the case whereby she advised the lady to go back to the Police Station and see the Head of the Police Station. He called the Head of the Police Station and reported the case on how the police Officers did not take the initiative of helping the lady to open up the file. Fatuma was able to go back to Police Station and explained her case to Police Gender Officer.
The Police went on and arrested Fatuma’s husband and put him in custody. The Husband was ordered to give Fatuma half of the resources including the money they got from cash nuts sales and building for her a house at her home Village (Rupoto). Fatuma managed to acquire her resources and she now lives in the new house with her parents and Children.
A Rescue From Marriage Conflict Resulting In Physical Violence
Mr Rasuli Ramadhan of 37 years of age is a farmer who works and lives in Magugu ward, Babati district in Manyara. Between March 2020 Mr Rasuli had a marital conflict with his wife named Hidaya Hamis aged 33. He has been complaining of the mistreatment he receives from his wife of being bitten by a wooden throwing club and being denied his marital rights. Occasionally he was locked outside their house where he spent the whole night. The wife went further by sleeping with other Men inside their house.
In April, our Human Rights monitor in Magugu intervened after receiving the complaints from Mr Rasuli whereby she recommended that he report the issue to the Police station that he was bitten and wounded by his wife. She also advised him to report it to the Muslim Counsel for more help or else he could go directly to court to get his marriage rights which have been violated.
With guidance from our monitor Veronica, Mr Rasuli managed to report his incidents to the police and went to the hospital for treatment. Soon after treatments, Veronica provided Legal awareness to Mr Rasuli on following the proper channels in handling his Marriage issues. Mr Rasuli went to meet with Bakwata Muslim Council leaders to resolve his marriage issues but unfortunately, they could not resolve the issue. Since the marriage could not be resolved, in May 2020 Mr Rasuli separated from his wife through Islamic laws and marital properties were equally sorted.
A Standard Seven Student Evasion In Makete
On 20th April 2020, a standard seven student named Sarah Aloyce Sanga aged 13 years from Malanduku Village in Lupila Ward at Makete District was evaded by her Uncle named Abel Sanga to Mbeya to look for in housework (house girl). The Uncle gave a reason for evasion that he found her a better School in Mbeya Region. Another reason was that Sarah was shifted from Makete to Mbeya because she had been missing the basic needs during her life under the care of her Grandmother. Her father left them helpless for a long time after he divorced his wife and went to Lake Nyasa.
The Head Teacher of Malanduku Primary School Mr Godfrey Haule asked for Sarah after went missing School for a long time. The headteacher reported the issue to Mr Norbert Sigalla who is LHRC Paralegal. Mr Norbert made the follow up by reporting the issue to Social Welfare Officer in Makete who communicated with Social Welfare Officer in Mbeya. Mr Norbert went on by reporting the issue to Government toll-free number 116 to seek help. The efforts from the Government Officials helped Sarah to return to School from Mbeya and her Uncle was arrested by Police for denying the Education rights to a child.
The Headteacher and Government Officials appreciated the steps taken by Mr Norbert that led to the rescue of Sarah to continue with her studies.
This article is part of the report produced by Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC)