I’d like to thank kifimbocheza for his words of encouragement and his updated information on the HakiElimu controversy. He has highlighted a press release that was issued on the 7, February, 2007. It outlines the agreements made after a meeting of HakiElimu and the Prime Minister of Tanzania Edward Lowassa.
The release can be viewed on the HakiElimu website, its URL being: http://hakielimu.org/press.pdf
I will not restate all that was mentioned in the document, however I will relate to some of the claims made in it. I advise all readers to take a look at the release.
In the list of agreements made, one of the few that stood out to me was point 3. I am particularly wary of the language used. As we all know that language can be a pervasive method of control and intimidation. I am not saying that this point is anything but genuine, however I do think that due to precedence, the prospect of it being carried out ethically and justly is less than favorable. The vagueness of the point that HakiElimu must use its ‘wisdom’ to make sure all work is ‘balanced’ raises questions of accountability. Who has the jurisdiction to decide whether HakiElimu is being biased or not? If the government then I highly doubt this will be a fair process. Which again relates to points 2 and 5 in the release.
Point 2 basically surmises that all published research must not only be authorized but endorsed by the “Chief Education Officer”. This once again raises my suspicion of whether this suppression and censorship is being played out.
I truly hope that my suspicions will prove to be unfounded and that free expression will prevail in Tanzanian civil society. Precedence has clouded my sense of optimism, yet I urge the government to prove me wrong. It will be the best for all.
Once again, thank you kifimbocheza for updating me on the current situation.