Reflections on the ‘Law Day’ celebrations, particularly regarding their aims and objectives

Yesterday,   1st  February,  2023;   was  the  anniversary  of  what  has  been  designated  as  “Law  Day”  in  Tanzania.   It  may  be  of  interest  to  the  current stakeholders to  know  that   the  idea  of  designating  this  particular  date  as  Tanzania’s  “Law  Day”,  was the  brainchild  of  the  late  Chief  Justice  Francis  Nyalali  and  was  intended  to  mark  the  commencement  of  the  Judiciary  ‘new  business  year’.

For  that  reason   the  celebrations  were   initially  confined  only  to  members  of the  Judiciary  Branch  of Government,  plus   the  legal  fraternity and  were  held   inside  one  of  the  court  rooms  within  the  High  Court  Building  in  Dar es  Salaam.   In  other  words,  this  event  started  as  a  purely  Judiciary  ‘in-house’  affair, intended only  for  those  who  were  directly  concerned.

Chief  Justice   Nyalali  had  also  decided  to  invite  the  Speaker  of  parliament  to  attend  these  occasions,  in  order  to  symbolise  participation  from  the  Legislative  Branch and  for  that  reason,  he  was  given  the   leading  role  of  being  the  ‘Guest  of  Honour’.   This  happened  during  the  time when  I  was  the  Speaker  of  the  House,  circa  1996/97.

Thus, in   that  connection,  I  can  vividly  remember  how,  on  one  such  occasion,  the  Chief  Justice  had  chosen  the  expression  “Haki  sawa  kwa  wote”  as  the   “kauli  mbiu”  for  that  year’s  celebrations.  When  my  invitation  to  attend  that  function  arrived and  I  saw  that;   I   quickly  wrote  back  to  point  out  that  the  expression  “Haki  sawa  kawa  wote”  was  in  fact  the  slogan of the  CIVIC  UNITED  FRONT  political  party and  showed  my  concern  that  this  was  inappropriate  for  such  a  national  event suggesting  instead the use  of  the  neutral  expression  “Watu  wote  ni  sawa  mbele  ya  sharia”,  which  is  also  used  in article  13 (1)  of  the  Constitution  of  the  United  republic.     The  Chief  Justice  promptly  agreed and  the 

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Chasefu Charcoal burners warned, they should stop the practice and apply for CDF

Traders from Chongwe transporting charcoal to the market in Lusaka on their bicycles

Chasefu District Commissioner Lufeyo Ngoma has warned charcoal burners in the area to desist from indiscriminate cutting down of trees.

The District Commissioner said those involved in the wanton cutting down of trees for charcoal production will face the law because their activity is destructive to the environment.

Mr Ngoma sounded the warning when he addressed residents at Mthwalo trading center in Chasefu district.

He said the rampant indiscriminate cutting down of trees affects the environment as it creates the negative effects that are leading to climate change.

Mr Ngoma said he was aware that people in the area are cutting down trees, producing charcoal and later transporting it into neighbouring Malawi for sale.

“I am warning you for the last time, stop cutting trees for charcoal production. When you get arrested it’s up to you, I don’t want my office to receive a complaint report pertaining to this,” the District Commissioner said.

Mr Ngoma also advised residents not to cut trees for opening up new crop fields but must instead maintain their existing fields.

And a local resident, Ben Zimba named Chijokeni, Munyathe, Mnyoka, Mthwalo and Ponda as areas where people were cutting trees to produce huge quantities of charcoal.

“What I have observed is that people here are poor, and they are forced to engage themselves in charcoal burning to earn a living without knowing the consequences,” he said.

Mr Zimba has suggested to charcoal burners to abandon their activities and instead apply for Constituency Development Funds to engage in less destructive business activities.

Meanwhile, Magodi Community Forest Management Group (CFMG) Chairperson Androse Zimba recently said his group is prepared to empower charcoal burners who are ready to stop the vice with goats, pigs

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