State Won’t Reverse Stand Against Gay Marriage

By Maureen Odunga

The government will stand firm on its decision against gay marriage in the country and all other acts which are against the constitution and traditions.

The Deputy Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Constitutional Affairs and Justice, Mr Amon Mpanju, made the remarks in Dar es Salaam yesterday at the Second Universal Periodic Review Recommendations- Civil Society Feedback Session and Development Follow up Strategies Workshop.

“While you are discussing, you should note that the government will never entertain recommendations that are contrary with the law of the land and the cultural norms of the society,” stressed Mr Mpanju.

Tanzania had submitted its human rights reports to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on May, this year in Geneva and was reviewed by fellow Member States prior to suggesting recommendations.

A total of 227 recommendations had been suggested through which 130 recommendations were accepted, 25 recommendations were being held and other 72 recommendations noted (set aside) for going against the country’s Constitution and traditions and customs.

The government is committed in ensuring that implementation of the accepted recommendations on human rights is executed effectively, calling upon stakeholders involvement and people’s support. A plan to put in place a national action plan for the UPR process was being worked on.

The Commission of Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRAGG), Mr Ramadhani Iddi Mapuri extended recognition to DANIDA and UNDP for their financial and technical support.

Mr Mapuri commended the efforts and contribution of the United Nations Tanzania and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the promotion and protection of human rights in the country.

Prior to the review, the government, CSOs and CHRAGG had submitted reports on the situation of human rights in the country, a number of recommendations were complied among which 25 were accepted and 75 rejected.

Earlier, the Tanzania Human Right Defenders Coalition (THRDC) National Coordinator, Mr Onesmo Olengurumwa, noted the aim of the dialogue as a means to familiarise the stakeholders with the UPR process recommendations that the country received in the Second UPR Cycle.

The meeting also intends to strategise on lobbying and advocacy of the recommendations that have blessings of the government, but also to collectively analyse those recommendations that do have the support.

On his part, the Regional Representative for Africa at UPR INFO, Mr Gibert Onyango stressed on the point that countries should not ignore on the noted or set aside recommendations because they have managed to trigger action in other places.


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