AN OVERVIEW OF THE LAWS ON TERRORISM IN TANZANIA

Published by Kemilembe Barongo

Terrorism is, in its broadest sense, is the unlawful use of intentional violence to achieve political aims. A person shall be considered to have committed a terrorist act if, with a terrorist intention, they do an act or omission which may seriously damage a country, severely intimidate a population, or unduly compel a Government or perform or abstain from performing any act.

The Prevention of Terrorism Act is the regulating document with regards to terrorism,  the act gives police officers of or above the rank of Assistant Superintendent, an immigration officer or a member of Tanzania intelligent security service the power to arrest without warrant any Person who has committed or is committing or whom is suspected to have committed or to be committing an offence under the Prevention of Terrorism Act.

Every person who-

a) is a member of; groups 

b) professes to be a member of, a terrorist group, is guilty of an offence and shall, on conviction, be liable to imprisonment for term not less than eighteen years.

The law also specifies that every person who; 

a) Aids and abets the commission of a terrorist offence; 

b) Attempts to commit a terrorist offence; 

c) Conspires to commit a terrorist offence; 

d) Counsels or Procures the commission of a terrorist offence

Is guilty of an offence and shall on conviction, be liable to the same punishment as is prescribed for the first mentioned offence

The act specifies that no prosecution for an offence under the Act shall be instituted except by or with the consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions. And the regulations empower a Court to, on motion by or on behalf of the Director of Public Prosecutions, in the interest of public safety or public order, exclude from proceedings instituted for any offence under this Act, any person other than the parties and their legal representatives.

The unique processes and system set up for the same is for the interest of justice and protecting the interests of the population in their day to day lives from unwarranted attacks and persons who wish to cause mass harm against the interests of the public.