Where We Work
Tanzania is a beautiful country, rich in natural wonders and warm hearted people. It has a population of around 55.8 million people with an estimated 50% under the age of 30 years. On the human development index Tanzania ranks 159 out of 189 and one third of people live on less than $1 per day, with 20% below the food poverty line. It is estimated that the Covid 19 crisis will further exacerbate these figures.
Despite an already stretched public spending budget, the government has made commitments to increase access to justice, and ratified the Legal Aid Act in 2017. This provides for the co-ordination of legal aid services and the recognition of legal aid providers such as paralegals. This function is regulated by The Ministry of Constitutional and Legal Affairs (MoCLA) who regulate, supervise and coordinate the overall provision of legal services.
Notwithstanding this, upholding the rule of law remains a challenge, and data collected by the World Justice Project, Rule of Law Index (which takes into account factors such as ease of access to civil and criminal justice, regulatory enforcement, fundamental rights and open government) ranks Tanzania as 93 out of 128 countries. In their specific report on Access to Justice their data recorded that only 25% of citizens experiencing a legal problem were able to access sources of help. Limited institutional funding presents the greatest challenge to implementing the Legal Aid Act. There is an acute need for alternative, low cost justice service modalities to support citizens resolve their justice problems.
Mobile phones present a huge opportunity for Tanzanian citizens. There is an 85 percent mobile phone penetration rate in Tanzania, including individuals, households and communities in remote rural areas of the country. With the huge transformation that m-pesa has brought to the financial sector, citizens use mobile phones for banking, information services and money lending facilities. Delivering mobile phone based legal information services will improve the ability of even remote rural households to advocate for their rights under the law of Tanzania.
Urban farming is a key source of livelihoods in which most rural households are engaged. However, land disputes are one of the major sources of conflict within families and communities, often exposing power inbalances and leaving the vulnerable further at risk of destitution.
Gender based violence
"There is one universal truth, applicable to all countries, cultures and communities: violence against women is never acceptable, never excusable, never tolerable."
Despite reforms, informal employment forms a major source of the workforce. However, weak regulation and economic drivers often perpetuate exploitative work practises with workers at huge risk of harm.
Dar es Salaam
In Zanzibar, a Legal Aid Policy was approved in June 2017 and a Legal Aid Bill is currently being drafted by the President’s Office of Constitution, Legal Affairs, Public Service and Good Governance.