Photo: Daniel Hayduk/AFP via Getty Images

Tanzania's President Magufuli

Tanzania Has Made It Illegal to Plan and Support Protests Online

Many consider this to be the latest in President John Magufuli's ongoing crackdown on freedom of expression in the country.

The Tanzanian government has banned the use of social media as a tool for organizing, planning and supporting protests, BBC Africa reports.

Under new legislation put in place by President John Magufuli, material found to be related to the purpose of demonstrations online is now considered illegal.

Activists consider the move the latest in the president's ongoing crackdown on freedom of speech in the East African nation. His presidency has been marked by crackdowns on opposition and those critical of his government. In 2018, the government proposed a bill that would charge bloggers a licensing fee in order to publish online.

In May, the Tanzanian comedian Idris Sultan was arrested for allegedly cyber-bullying the president after a video of him laughing at an old picture of the president was shared on social media.

According to BBC Africa, the legislation also prohibits the sharing of information about infectious disease outbreaks without prior government permission and also has implications for those using WhatsApp messaging groups to communicate.

In June, the president declared the country "coronavirus-free," though some have questioned the accuracy of the claim. Authorities have not submitted official record of coronavirus cases, despite requests from the World Health Organization (WHO).

Photo by Rachel Seidu.

#EndSARS: Security Forces Open Deadly Fire on Protesting Nigerians

Nigerian security forces have reportedly opened fire on protesters at Lekki Toll Gate amid continued demonstrations against police brutality. This comes after the Nigerian government recently enforced an abrupt curfew in Lagos.

It has been reported that security forces in Nigeria have opened fire on protestors at Lekki Toll Gate in Lagos. Several reports from various media outlets have confirmed this incident after numerous images and videos emerged on social media. The footage reveals protesters running away from security forces as they fire live rounds into the crowds while others have been shown to be injured. No fatalities have as yet been officially confirmed by mainstream media. Protesters have continued mass demonstrations against the infamous Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) which has been now been "rebranded" by the Nigerian government to a new unit termed the Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT).

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