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Tanzania road accidents kill 11,000 in three years: official

ARUSHA Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzania’s road accidents claimed the lives of more than 11,000 people over the past three years, an official said Monday.

Hamad Masauni, Tanzanian deputy minister of Home Affairs, revealed this when speaking at the official launch of the country’s road safety week held in Geita Region, located on the western shores of Lake Victoria.

“For the past three years, road accidents have killed 11,230 people over the past three years and injured 44,602 others,” the minister said, citing reckless driving and excessive speed as the reason behind the road accidents.

Not long before the road safety week, 25 people died in two separate bus accidents.

With a motto “No road crashes—We want to live”, this year’s road safety week features an intensive vehicle inspection all over the country.

Masauni directed the state-run Tanzania National Roads Agency to remove speed humps on highways, saying they are a cause of accidents instead of a deterrent against speeding.

Geita Regional Safety Committee Chairman Edward Nyauringo said that the week kicked off in line with training offered to drivers in an effort to curb accidents.

According to Nyauringo, most of the accidents in the region were caused by unskilled drivers who enter into the profession without proper training.

Mohamed Mpinga, Tanzania’s Chief Traffic Police Commander, cited the increase of motor vehicles, road users and defective vehicles on roads as some of the major reasons for the spike of road accidents.



Tanzania police lift ban on internal political party meetings

ARUSHA Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian police have lifted ban on all political party internal meetings with effect from Thursday, after being satisfied with the country’s state of security and stability in the east African nation.

“We’re also working on lifting a similar ban on political public rallies, but this will be done after a thorough evaluation is done of the state of security and stability in the country,” Nsato Mssanya, head of operations and training in Tanzania Police Force, said in a statement on Thursday

He said that indicators show that the state of national security has improved for political parties to be allowed to continue with their internal meetings.

Last month, Tanzania Police Force banned all political parties’ internal meetings on grounds that information gathered from intelligence sources showed such meetings were becoming a threat to the national peace.

The move however received criticism from human rights activist groups, who cited it as a big blow to the country’s democratic space.


Tanzania’s leading medical facility set to perform kidney transplant

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzania’s leading medical facility Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH) will next year begin performing kidney transplant surgery, saving millions of dollars spent by the east African nation for referring patients abroad, an official said on Thursday.

Hedwiga Swai, the MNH Director of Medical Services, said the medical facility has secured 1.8 million U.S. dollars from the National Health Insurance Fund (NHIF) for the construction of a theatre and acquisition of medical equipment for kidney transplant surgery.

“We hope to begin kidney transplant surgery beginning January 2017,” said Swai.

She said the MNH was only performing dialysis services to patients with kidney disorders as preliminary medical care before referring patients abroad, including India, for kidney transplant surgery.

Dialysis is the artificial process of eliminating waste and unwanted water from the blood, a process done after the kidneys had failed to function properly.

She said the MNH has only 17 dialysis machines that enabled doctors to provide dialysis services to at least 51 patients per day.

“It takes an average time of four hours for a single patient to undertake the procedure and then he or she makes way for another patient to undertake it. The patient is required to undertake the procedure three times a week,” said Swai.

She said the new facility will be fully equipped with at least 42 dialysis machines that could perform the procedure to at least 126 patients a day.

According to available statistics, the government spends about 37,000 dollars for sending a patient and an escort donor to India, including medical care and transport fare.

She said the MNH last week dispatched 20 specialists to India to upgrade their skills on how to perform kidney transplant surgery.


Tanzania to launch judicial modernization program

DAR ES SALAAM Tanzania (Xinhua) -- Tanzanian Chief Justice Mohamed Chande Othman said Monday the judiciary has set aside 120 million U.S. dollars for making administration of justice more efficient and transparent.

“As part of the modernization program, the judiciary will introduce a new training course for court stenographers along with the provision of online services,” he told a news conference in the East African nation’s commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

Justice Othman said the five-year Judicial Modernization and Justice Service Delivery Program was aimed at improving efficiency and transparency of courts in the country, the second largest economy in East Africa.

He said the program will be officially launched in Kibaha district on Wednesday by Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa on behalf of President John Magufuli.

“With the introduction of online services people will be able to file cases through the internet and follow proceedings through the same,” said the Chief Justice.

He said the newly established anti-corruption and economic crime court has also been lined up for modernization to speed up hearing of cases and judgements rendering.

He said judges tasked to anti-corruption cases should ensure that case proceedings were conducted within 30 days.

The anti-corruption court is the brainchild of President Magufuli, who announced the establishment of the court soon after he took power.



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