CIVIL SOCIETIES AND NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
This paper is going to discuss about civil societies and Non governmental organizations. The literature review part will discuss the definition, the roles and principles of civil society. The second part will identify different policies reviewed, and the third part will include empirical issues, suggestions and conclusion which states either these are Development partners or political oppositions.
2.0. Literature review
Civil society can be defined as “the public realm of organized social activity located between state and private house hold”. The central argument is that civil society household”. The central argument is that civil society provides areas for people to engage themselves in activities they perceive as important.
Civil society refers to the arena of uncoerced collective action around shared interests, purpose and value. In theory, its institution forms are distinct from those of the state, family and market, though in practice, the boundaries between state, civil society, family and market are often complex, blurred and negotiated. Civil society commonly embraces a diversity of spaces, actors and institutional forms, varying in their degree of formality, autonomy and power. Civil societies are often populated by organizations such as registered charities, development non-governmental organizations, community groups, women’s organizations, faith-based organizations, professional associations, trades unions, self-help groups, social movements, business associations, coalitions and advocacy group. http://www.lse.ac.uk/collections/CCS/what is civil society.htm
Civil Society refers to all groups outside government such as community groups, non-governmental organizations, labour unions, Indigenous Peoples’ organizations, charitable organizations, faith-based organizations, professional associations and foundations. Civil society expresses the interests of social groups and raises awareness of key issues in order to influence policy and decision-making. In recent decades, Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) have been successful in shaping global policy through advocacy campaigns and Community Based Organisation mobilization of people and resources. http://www.fao.org/tc/NGO/index en.asp
Perhaps the simplest way to see civil society is as a “third sector”, distinct from government and business. In this view, civil society refers essentially to the so-called “intermediary institutions” such as professional associations, religious groups, and labor unions, citizen advocacy organizations that give voice to various sector of society and enrich public participation in democracies. http://www.civilsoc.org/whatisCS.htm
We realize there are many definitions of civil society. The working definition of civil society used to inform the work of the Inquiry has three dimensions: The civil Society as associational life; Civil Society as the ‘good’ society; Civil Society as arenas for public deliberation, and they are defined as follows:
Civil Society as associational Life
Civil society is the ‘space’ of organized activity not undertaken by either the government or for-private-profit business. It includes formal and informal associations such as: voluntary and community organizations, trade unions, faith-based organizations, co-operatives and mutuals. Political parties, professional and business associations, philanthropic organizations, informal citizen groups and social movement, Participation in or such organizations is voluntary in nature.
Civil Society as the ‘good’ society
The term civil society is often used as a short-hand for the type of society we want to live in and can therefore viewed in normative terms. It is often assumed that civil society is a good thing, but this is not necessarily true. For example, civil society associations can help strengthen democracy and improve the well-being of deprived communities as can they undermine human rights and preach intolerance and violence. The Inquiry is therefore especially concerned about the strength of civil society associations as a means through which values and outcomes such as non-violence, non-discrimination, democracy, mutuality and social justice are nurtured and achieved; and as a means through which public policy dilemmas are resolved in ways that are just, effective and democratic. A ‘good’ civil society needs to have constructive relationship with government, statutory agencies, the business sector and media. The actions of society association alone cannot achieve a ‘good’ civil society.
Civil Society as arenas for public deliberation
Civil society is an arena for public deliberation and the exercise of active citizenship in pursuit of common interest. It is the public space in which society differences, social problems, public policy, government action and matters of community and cultural identity are developed and debated. These public spaces might be physical in nature, such as community centers, or virtual, such as blogs. We may never share a common vision about what a ‘good’ society might look like and how it might be achieved, but can be committed to a process that allows people of all ages and backgrounds to share in defining how different visions are reconciled.
To summarise, civil society is a goal to aim for (a ‘good’ society), a means to achieve it (association life), and a frameworks for engaging with each other about ends and means (arenas for deliberation).
Civil society comprises the totality of voluntary civic and social organizations and institutions that from the basis of a functioning society. It is differentiated from a state in the sense that the state has farce-backed structures. They commonly embrace a diversity of spaces, actors and institutional forms varying in their degree of formality, autonomy and power.
The civil society organizations include non-governmental organizations (NGOS), community based organizations or groups, registered charities, professional associations, faith-based organizations, trade unions, self-help groups, business associations, social movements, coalitions and advocacy groups.
Some have noted that the civil society actors have obtained a remarkable amount of political power anyone directly electing or appointing them. They have opportunity to act beyond boundaries and cross different territories.
Examples of civil society institutions
1. Non-governmental organizations (NGOs)
2. Private voluntary organizations (PVOs)
3. Community based organizations (CBOs)
4. Civic clubs
5. Trade unions
6. Gender, cultural and religious groups
8. Social and sports clubs
10. Environmental groups
11. Professional associations
12. Policy institutions
13. Consumers organizations
14. Religious organizations
15. The media
Purposes of Civil Society Organisations
CSOs exist for a variety of purposes, usually to further the political or social goals for their members. It includes improving the state of the natural environment, encouraging the observance of human rights, improving the welfare of the disadvantage or representation of corporate agenda.
CSOs address varieties if issues such as religion, emergency aid, and humanitarian affairs. They mobilize public support and voluntary contributions for aid; they often have strong ; links with community groups in developing countries and they often work in areas where government-to-government aid is not possible.
Evolutionary stages of Development CSOs.
Relief and welfare
At this stage CSOs focus on relief and welfare and delivers relief services directly to beneficiaries. Examples are the distribution of food, shelter or health services. These kind of CSOs notice the immediate needs and responds to them.
Small scale, self-reliant local development.
At this evolutionary stage, CSOs build the capacities of local communities to meet their needs through ‘self reliant local action.
Sustainable systems development.
At this stage, CSOs try to advance changes in policies and institutions at a local, national and international level; they move away from their operational service proving role towards a catalytic role. Advancement from relief to development.
Attributes of people working in CSOs
· Voluntarism-due to altruism or hope for getting immediate benefits including skills, experience and contacts.
· Commitment to aims and principal of the organization.
· Teamwork spirit
· Non-hierarchical approach
The establishment of partnership between these civil society organizations and government agencies, multilateral organizations and private companies has proven to be one of the most effective ways to achieve sustainable development. Civil society organizations which include nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), community groups, private sector entities and other institutions also help improve development effectiveness, stimulate transparency and sound government, by holding governments and policy makers publicly accountable for their policies and actions.
However, some people consider that the real civil society organizations are those which are critical of the state while the rest are merely not governmental. Civil society organizations are supposed to make the government behave in a better way. But mock civil society organizations can exist that serve only to gain access to development aid.
Mechanisms used by CSO to attain their goals.
CSO uses several mechanisms of lobbying and advocacy aimed at creating awareness in the community and influencing the police and decisions makers. Approaches used include community mobilization, education, and community support. As the result they gain support of people in power and changing the social environment in the society.
Almost all civil society organizations have experience of doing advocacy even if they do not realize it or do not use the word advocacy.
Using advocacy, bring about change in the policies, laws and practices of influential individuals, group and institutions. That results into change of attitudes, actions, policies and laws by influencing people and organizations with power, system and structure at different levels for the betterment of people.
CSOs try to influence the thinking of legislators or other public officials for or against a specific cause for the citizens’ welfare.
Using community mobilization they also change the capacity of communities to identify and address their problems.
Other approaches used include briefing notes and position papers, which are documents that clearly state the position of opinion of an organization (or a coalition of organizations) about a particular issue. The message of these documents is: ‘This is what we think about this topic, and this is what we recommend’. They are different from a press release, which is written specifically for a media audience.
According to ujamaa ideals, the political system was organized to give the people an opportunity to voice their concerns through the village council and from there up through the party system to the central government. In effect however, the communication went the other way around, with directives coming from the party headquarters and implemented by local CCM OFFICES.
Tanzania is among those countries, which took up the challenge. Since 1980s and early 1990s a wide range of social, and political reforms were introduced. The main reason of these reforms is to ultimately change, inter alia, the centralist system of governance in order to allow more participation of civil society in governance through their collective power.
So, this period is giving more opportunity for the civil society oganisations to play a big role in helping the government to alleviate poverty in the country. A number of reform policies are now in place to encourage them. Here we mention some as follows.
1. The public Sector Reforms (PSRP) 1990s. This is a central/local relationship, functions, finance, human resource management and empowerment of the Civil Society through their local institution and civil organizations.
2. The Civil Service Reform Programme (CSRP). It was launched in mid 1991 with the aim of reducing the government’s role and functions to affordable levels, enhancing the involvement and participation of CBOs, NGOs and Private Sector in the economy as well as in the delivery of goods and social services, expansion and strengthening of democratic institution and promotion of good governance.
3. Local Governance Reform Programme (LGRP) June 1996. The programme aimed at transferring substantial powers and authority from the central to the local government of as well as decentralizing the social services delivery.
4. Parastatal Sector Reform Programme (PSRP). It was initiated in 1992 to focus on privatization of the public enterprises and parastatal, which were by then the muscles of the government’s autonomy and monopoly over the economy.
5. The Social Sector Reform Programme (SSRP). It started in early 1980s. This is the result of the crisis caused by the rapid change of the implementation of Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP), which threatened the country’s economic and social development, lead to the stagnation in education, health, water and other services.
6. The Political Reforms: One party to multiparty politics. The crises of the centralist state in Tanzania were not only economic, but also political. In 1980s economic crises were by and large, a result of the failure of one of the strongest pillars of the centralist state. The globalization, transition to multiparty democracy, and economic reforms initiated in mid 80s pressurized the need for political forms. Consequently, in May 1992 constitutional changes were introduced. The changes ushered to transition from one party to multiparty politics.
As per National Strategy for Growth and Reduction of poverty (NSGRR) civil society organizations are key actors in poverty reductions. Their roles and responsibility will include: building local capacity and evaluation at national and community level; mobilizing and enhancing community participation; and mobilizing community resources for poverty reduction.
Civil Society Organizations will advocate for accountability of its members and government to the people. Civil society will work closely with the government ministries and local authorities and implemented in the sectoral and district plans.
Tanzania is among the signatory countries to the cotonou Agreement, a cooperation signed in june 2000 between the European Union and a group of countries in Africa, the Carribean and Asia(collectively known as ACP group). Tanzania has benefited from this aid envelope granted within the framework of the ninth European Development Fund(EDF) which finances the ACP EC cooperation covering the period 2002 to 2007 as laid down in the current country strategy paper.
CIVIL SOCIETY IN TANZANIA
Pre- Colonial Period
The Civil Society organizations have existed in Tanzania from early days of civilization to the present. Some example including solidarity groups at family, clan, village and chiefdom levels. The main purpose of formulating these organizations was to work towards the protection of members against social and economic distress.
During Colonial Period
The colonial period saw the emergency of a number of social movement and organizations. Perhaps most important were Islam and Christians; of which Islam was the fastest growing, increasing from 3 to 25 percent of the population between 1916 and 1934. Christian concretion was slower, and reached 25% only by 1957. The new religious identities cut across linguistic and ethnic lines, and so did sports-clubs and dance societies. The beni dance societies, popular from around 1890 to 1930. Provided not only recreation, but also mutual aid for their members and training in organizations skills. The colonial authorities barred African civil servants from joining these societies and suspected them of being a cover for political activity as they developed a well organized network with branches in all the major towns.
During the struggle for independency
During the period of nationalist struggle for independency, civil society organization especially trade union and peasant co-operatives experienced considerable transformation. After realizing the meager impact of isolated workers association and unions, they decided to come together and form large unions. A good example is the formation of the Tanganyika Federation Labour(TFL) in October 1955, an umbrella organization for trade unions, in lieu of the Tanganyika African Trade Union Congress, which was there since 1951. At the same time political parties were being formed, for example TAA and ASP. These party organizations led the country to independent and unity.
Urban migrants also formed ethnic associations to provide social services like burial assistance and loans. By 1954 there were 51 such organizations in Dar es Salaam, with total membership of 6500. Some of these associations proved to be influential. The Wazaramo Union for example, successfully lobbied the colonial administration to make them withdraw their support to unpopular local leader and replace them with leaders who had broader popular support.
For national politics however, occupational associations to provide social services like burial assistance and loans. By 1954 there were 51 such organizations in Dar es Salaam, with a total membership of 6500. Some of these associations proved to be influential. The Wazaramo their support to unpopular local leaders and replace them with leaders who had broader popular support.
For national politics however, occupations like the Africa Commercial Association (traders) and the Africa Association (clerks, teachers and civil servants) were far more central. The African Association was formed in Dar es Salaam in 1929, and during the 1930s, regional branches were established in other parts of the country. When Nyerere came back from his studies in British in 1953, he was made president of the association Inspired by the development in Ghana Nyerere was determined, and the name was changed to Tanganyika African National Union (TANU). In less than ten years, faster than any one had hoped for, Tanganyika was granted independence and TANU won an overwhelming majority of the votes.
TANUs success was due to their collaboration with existing associations. In the rural areas, a strong cooperative movement union had developed, numbering 617 societies in 1959. In the cities, TANU joined hands with the labour movement. The first registered African trade Union was formed in 1963, but it was with the union driver of the Tanganyika Federation of Labour (TFL) that union became a mass movement. As many as forty two percent of the workers were members of a union by 1961, while the same was true for only six percent in Kenya at the same time. Women were recruited to TANU through dance societies, in fact the TANU women league is said to have been modeled on the women branches of the many dance societies of time.
Ironically enough, the kind of civil society that had enabled TANU to come to power was suppressed once independence have been achieved. During the first few years of independency, the former TANU supporter Tanganyika Federation of Labour came in conflict with the new government and was banned. It was replaced by a government controlled trade union, the National union of Tanganyika workers (NUTA). Fearing disintegrating powers, the authorities also banned all unions based on ethnic identity, and warned religious associations to stay out of politics. As part of this policy, and as a move towards a more centralized government, the chiefdom system was abolished in 1964. With the chiefdoms, a number of traditional organizations disappeared. In order to contain the potential discontent of the earlier chiefs, they were given civil services posts.
In 1976, also the cooperative movement, which had been so important for the mobilizing of support to TANU, was banned. It was replaced by the Union of Cooperative Societies, initiated by the party. Other “mass organizations” that functioned under the party wing were the National Union of Tanganyika Workers (NUTA), the Union of Tanzania Women (UWT), the Youth Organization and the Tanzania Parents Association. These organizations were given the monopoly to organize people, and they were all organized from the top rather than from below. Their lack of a popular support band resources made these organizations unable to provide the services and functions that they were supposed to, and participation and output was low compared to independent organizations like YWCA which offered its members both more autonomy and more accountability.
In rhetoric, president Nyerere was concerned with participation of the people in the development process. The problem was that this participation was to be through the party only. The Ruvuma Development Association, for example, which organized communal production and provided social services to its members, was disbanded in 1969 as the regional authorities saw its autonomy and emphasis on democracy as a threat. Smaller community based organizations like women’s savings clubs (upato) were generally not interfered with.
The Post Colonial Period (1961- 1980)
At this period CSOs were quite free, despite the fact that they had joined hand with political parties in the nationalist struggle against colonialism. These organizations struggled to avoid control by the parties or the government. But this situation did not last long because of a threat and danger to the new nationalist government and rulling party. Good example was when the government decided to make sure that all trade unions were registered under the Tanganyika Federation Labour (TFL), and that the trade unions were not allowed to organize strikes. Thirdly, the registrar of Trade unions was given power to withdraw the registration of any trade union, including TFL, if it was found to have problems. The efforts ended up by having a trade union organization, which was affiliated to the rulling party as one of its mass organizations.
From the 1990s the trade union began to take steps to free themselves from state control and regain its lost autonomy. Throughout history, Trade Union changed names to the present name of Tanzania Union of Free Trade Association. It is good to keep in mind that during this period all NGO ceased to operate in this country.
Each evolution period The CSO was existing/operation according to the situation/environment that made the change. In mid 1980s it has become increasingly evident that centralizes systems or governance has proved to be a total failure in most countries of Sub-Sahara Africa.
Further, global political and economic reforms initiated during the same period, ushered the need for establishing more liberal and democratic systems of governance, particularly in African countries. The compelling political change therefore, was how to mobilize collective power of civil societies so as to enable them shape and manage their own lives more democratic, secure and sustainable.
Civil Society in Tanzania has grown rapidly in the last 20 years both in scope and numbers. Whilst the previous single party system stifled the developed of dynamic, vocal and demanding civil societies, the political liberalization of the 1990’s has encouraged the emergence of a diverse range of civil society organizations. As a result, the number of registered CSOs in Tanzania has risen from around 200 in 1993 to more than 2000 today.
Whilst some of the earliest NGOs were often affiliated to the government and engaged mainly in the provision of social services to the poor, advocacy and human rights, CSOs have become increasingly visible in recent years. This has been exemplified with the establishment of various civil society coalitions to challenge the government on a range of issues such as women’s rights, land rights and reform of the Constitution. Over time, the Government has grown to be less suspicious and more accepting of the role which civil society organizations can play in the policy-making arena, although it still remains sensitive to criticism in a number of areas.
Most of the prominent advocacy CSOs are based in Dar es Salaam or other urban centres and are mainly dominated by professional groups such as journalists or lawyers. It is important to recognize, however, that civil society organizations which ultimately benefit the poor often initially emerge through the work of middle class of professional elites who are working for the poor, but are not necessarily of the poor themselves. Whilst there are few CSOs working on the ground in the governance sector, religious organizations do have structure at the local level civic education and human rights awareness activities.
The privately-owned press and the broadcast media have also emerged rapidly during the 1990’s. In 1992 there were only two daily newspaper (one published by the government and the other by the ruling political party), one radio station and no television broadcasting in mainland Tanzania. Between 1992-1997, however 112 newspaper and magazine were registered, as well as 11 private radio station and five television stations. Whilst there were only 200 journalists in 1992 today there are more than 4000. Despite this exponential growth, many of this journalism across the industry remain weak. The dominance of the media by three main publishing house which are widely perceived to be largely sympathetic in the press and has served to constrain its watchdog function.
As with the media, the main opposition political parties have proved similarly ill-equipped to monitor the government and hold it to account for its policies and performance. This is mainly due to the opposition’s considerable lack of resources compared to the ruling CCM; their weak party structures especially at the grassroots; ongoing their and intra-party feuds and factionalism; and the continued dominance of personalistic over issue-based politics.
Civil Society organizations are currently registered under five different government acts. The majority are registered under the Society Ordinance of 1954, regulated by the Registrar of Society in the Ministry of Home Affairs. For registration under this ordinance the organisation concerned must have a Constitution, a minimum of 15 members, a Steering Committee/or Board and regular meeting of the Steering Committee/Boar. The registered organizations are not allowed to engage in “political” activities but can lobby and pressurize for legislative and policy reforms provided they are “non-partisan”. The inherent ambiguity of these provisions had been exploited by government on a number of occasions to curtail the activities of certain CSOs. The most notable such example was in the case of the women’s organisation, BAWATA, which was deregistered by the government in response to its supposedly activist role in the 1995 elections. A case brought by BAWATA to challenge the constitutionality of government’s decisions is still pending in the courts.
A number of CSOs are also registered as companies limited by guarantee under the Companies act of 1954, or as trustees under the Trustees Incorporation Justice and Constitutional Affairs. Some CSOs have also sought registration under the National Sports Council Act. Trade Unions are registered under the Trade Unions Act of 1991, whilst political parties come under the Political Parties Ac of 1992.
The on-going reforms, whether driven by economic concern or by quest for devolution of power, have fuelled a transformation of the then centralized system of governance in which the civil society and a marginal place. Although, it may be premature to conclude that Tanzania politics are now pluralistic, the economic and political reforms have fostered the establishment of new avenues for-operation between the state and civil society.
Key Characteristics of Civil Society Entities in the Area of Governance
As the description suggest, there is a wide spectrum of CSOs pursing a range of different interests and objectives within the governance sector. It is still possible, however, to discern a number of common characteristics which are shared by many of the organizations in this field. These are outlined below:
Legal Status: Almost all governance and human rights CSOs are registered with the Governance under one of the statutory Acts.
Size: The majority of civil society organisation in the governance field are small, with few having more than two or three full-time, salaried staff. Most rely to a large extent on the services of volunteers. Some of the more established NGOs, however, such as TGNP, TAWMA and LHRC, have managed to recruit a staff of 10 or more full-time professionals to work on their grammes.
Constituencies and Accountability: The majority of advocacy CSOs is urban-orientated, elite organizations which frequency does not have links to the constituencies they purport to represent. The sector as a whole remains largely unrepresentative of poor people and many CSOs continue to be dominated by single leaders with little accountability to their members. This elite capture of many CSOs serves to limit popular participation and may over the longer term hinder the sector’s development as a vehicle for effective policy engagement.
Certain organisation such as TGNP and Envirocare, however, are seeking to increase the representation of poor people by developing networks in the regions and forging greater links with grassroots NGOs and community-based organizations (CBOs). Furthermore, it should also be recognized that many of the advocacy organizations based in Dar es Salaam have worked to improve the positions of poor and vulnerable groups through their policy lobbying efforts (e.g. on land, women’s rights, debt relief and the Constitution) at the national level.
Funding and Sustainability: It is evident that the majority of CSOs in the fields of rights awareness and advocacy are dependent on donor funds for the bulk of their income. A number of the membership organizations charge annual fees to their members but this constitutes a very small proportion of total revenue. In a few cases, certain CSOs have begun to earn some income through consultancy activities and commissioned research on behalf of donors and government institutions.
Since activities such as rights awareness and advocacy campaigns do not generate resources, it is doubtful whether any of these CSOs could become completely self-sustaining, in a financial sense, over the short of medium-term. However, the worth of these organizations should not be measured solely in terms of the long-tem impact that are having in transforming political culture and influencing the legal and policy environment to the benefit of poor people. Whilst is obviously important to encourage CSOs to develop stable sources of income which will make them less reliant on donor funding, one should not neglect the broader outcomes they are promoting.
Capacity: Civil society organizations contacted during the course of this study identified capacity constraints as the principal factor limiting their effectiveness in the policy dialogue arena. In some cases, this related to simply not having permanent premises of the necessary equipment to conduct their operations. Concerns were also expressed about a shortage of skills in areas such as organizational system and strategies planning. Other organizations also pointed towards the need to develop lobbying, networking and coalition-building skills in order to improve the horizontal linkages between CSOs and increase their collective impact on the policy-making process. Whilst some of the Dar-based organizations had developed sufficient human and institution capacities in many of these areas, very few of the rural CSOs were thought to be similarly well-equipped.
Co-ordination: Aside from some notable exception there has been a general reluctance on the part of most CSOs to work together in order to achieve their shared aims and objectives. Organisations tend to view their relations with other CSOs as competitive rather than complementary and as result, there the sector. This reluctance to co-operate and share information not only leads to an inefficient utilization of resources, but it also serves to reduce the impact of resources, of CSOs on the wider political debate and national policy-making processes.
Monitoring and Evaluation: Most civil society organizations do not systematically conduct monitoring and evaluations as part of their project activities, and independent evaluations to be a growing awareness amongst CSOs however, of the need to develop appropriate tools to asses impact and measure the long-term out-comes of their activities.
Donor Approaches to Civil Society.
The main sources of support to civil organisation in Tanzania have been bilateral donors such as DANIDA, SIDA, NORAD, USAID and the Royal Netherlands Embassy. The German political foundation, Friedrich Ebert Stiftung has also been particularly active in this field. CSOs have also received a certain amount of support from international NGOs and ecumenical organizations such as Oxfam, Christian Aid, Action Aid, HIVOS (Holland), NOVIB (Holland), the Danish Centre for Human Rights and Miserio (Spain).
Civil Society Activities
The civil society organizations reviewed in this study can be into the following categories: - Human rights organizations, Legal aid organisation, Dmocracy organizations, Church organisation, Media organizations, Independent research groups, Political parties.
Many CSOs undertake more than one activity and therefore, these categorizations are not rigid. The following is a description of activities undertaken by organizations falling within the above categories.
Human Rights Organisations
There are now a number of prominent civil society organizations working on human rights issues in Tanzania. The activities which these organizations undertake include the provision of legal services (see below), civic education, human rights training, and research and advocacy work.
The vast majority of the human rights CSOs are based in Dar es Salaam, Arusha and Mwanza and they tend to be dominated by urban, middle-class professionals such as lawyers and journalists. Some of these organizations have made serious attemps, however, to expand their activities to the regions and to develop the capacity of grassroots organizations engage in human rights activities.
The Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP) for example, has actively encouraged the establishment of Intermediate Gender Networks (IGNs) at the local level in 10 districts of the country. Their programme is aimed at enhancing the capacity of the IGNs to articulate clear visions and strategies skills in areas such as financial management and project design. Other human rights NGO, Envirocare has also been instrumental in the creation of a network of Gender Legal Committees in hundreds of villages across Kilimanjaro region. The role of these committees has been to raise awareness on rights issues, support victims of gender violence and monitor human rights abuses at the community level.
Some of the active and well respected CSOs in this sector are the women’s human rights organizations such as TGNP, Tanzania Women’s Lawyer’s Association (TAWLA) and Tanzania Media Women’s Association (TAMWA). All of these organizations have been actively involved in raising awareness of a range of women’s rights issues such as gender-based violence and female genital mutilation. They have also been extremely active in the lobbying and advocacy fields, where their collective efforts have had a notable influence on government policy in a number of key areas. The TAWLA-led Gender Land Task Force, for example was successful in introducing several amendments into the Land Act which ensured that the final legislation was far more gender progressive on the questions of land inheritance and other issues than might have been expected. Similarly, a TAMWA-led coalition helped to amend the Sexual Offences Act so that it provided greater protection and legal recourse to victims of rap and sexual violence. In order to consolidate these achievements, TGNP has been instrumental in the formation of coalition of women’s rights CSOs called Feminists Activities (FEMACT) whose remit is to initiate joint initiatives on issues of common concern.
Outside of the gender field, a number of civil society organizations were also engaged in intensive lobbying of the government on its proposals for the establishment of a Human Rights Commission (HRC). Whilst not all of the CSOs suggested amendments were in corporated into the final Bill, their intervention ensured that the HRC’s powers to investigate abuses were somewhat enhanced. Concerns still remain, however, about the HRC’s lack of autonomy from the executive since all of its Commissioners will be appointed by the President-and its restricted mandate precluding it from prosecuting cases of human rights violations.
The success of the aforementioned coalition has derived mainly from their willingness to engage in a constructive dialogue with the Governance rather than simply criticizing its stance on contentious issues. For its part, the Government has reciprocated by allowing civil society a greater role in the policy-making process. This has been most strikingly demonstrated in relation to the gender budgeting initiative where the Government has invited women’s CSOs into four key ministries to monitor current budget allocations from a gender perspective and to develop gender guidelines to ensure future good practice.
The involvement of CSOs in the training of police, prison officials and magistrates on human rights issues has also opened up a space for civil society-government engagement within the justice system. The Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC), for example, has recently developed a training manual for police which the official training curriculum for new recruits. There are also a number of other CSOs who are currently considering options for working with the prison authorities to improve condition and respect for human rights in the country’s penal institutions. These include Concern for Development Initiatives in Africa (ForDIA), the Faculty of Law UDSM and Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC), Envirocare is also undertaking a project to improve the treatment of juvenile offenders in remand homes.
Legal Aid Organizations
A number of the human rights CSOs mentioned above have also been involved in the provision of legal aid services. Since there is no statutory legal aid in Tanzania except in the cases of murder and treason, most citizens can not afford to hire the services of advocates of legal advisers. This has resulted in unfairness and injustices in the administration of law, especially in relation to poorest members of the community and other vulnerable groups such as women and children.
To address this problem, a number of CSOs have been providing free and court representation to those in most need. These CSOs concentrate mainly on civil case, particularly in relation to landlord and tenant, inheritance, matrimonial, child custody and labour issues. They also take other cases where there is a clear public interest or where a successful outcome might result in change to the law for the benefit of poor of vulnerable groups. Although some cases end up in court, the organizations concerned usually seek mediation and out-of-court court settlements rather than litigation through the formal legal system which can be an extremely labour intensive and consuming process.
Whilst most of the organisations involved in this sector are based in Dar es Salaam, several have established legal aid clinics in the regions. Two NGOs-the LHRC and the Women’s Legal Aid Centre (WLAC)-have trained volunteer paralegals to provide advice in their clinics, although most others continue to rely on the services of qualified lawyers. In addition to legal broader awareness of legal and human rights issues, for example through weekly radio or television programmes.
Up until recently, most of the CSOs involved in the provision of legal services has been striving individually to mobilize resources from different donors and agencies for the support of their activities, leading in some cases to duplication of efforts and funds. In order to ensure greater co-ordination, however, seven CSOs (TAWLA, TAMWA, LHRC, WLAC, Tanganyika Law Society (TLS), The Legal Aid Committee of the Faculty of Law,(and Envirocare) decided in 1999 to establish a Legal Aid and Human Rights Network, funded by the Danish Development Agency (DANIDA). The immediate objectives of the Network were as follows: -
· Minimize duplicity of efforts in legal aid and legal literacy activities through a well coordinated net-work of CSO;
· Provide legal assistance and legal knowledge more efficiently through coverage of some administrative costs;
· Act as a lobby group for relevant public interest issues;
· Litigation on various human rights issues, in particular test cases with the potential for changing the legal and human rights situation of women and other vulnerable groups;
· Mobilization of resources for the aforementioned activities and decide on their use and distribution to assist the delivery of legal aid and legal literacy in a co-ordinated way.
Whilst a Secretariat responsible for the day-to-day management of the Network has been set up, there have been some strains in its relationship with the participating CSOs which has led on delays in funding and project activities. Some feel that CSOs the concept of a network has not been shared by all the CSOs involved and this is illustrated by the fact that a comprehensive strategic plan has not been developed. The institutional set-up of the Network has also been criticized since there is no clear definition of the roles and responsibilities of the various stakeholders. The existence of two bodies, a Steering Committee and an Executive Council, both with very similar mandates and memberships has added to the sense of confusion. For their part, the has added to the sense of confusion. For their part, the CSOs concerned have identified a lack of understanding on the part of the Secretariat and rigid donor procedures as the main reasons for the hiatus. whatever the rights or wrongs of the issue, it is clear that a lack of consensus between the participating bodies on how the Network should be constituted has ensured that the goal of greater co-ordination in the provision of legal aid is yet to be realized.
Democracy and Political Empowerment CSOs
Many of the above-mentioned legal and human rights CSOs are also involved in political empowerment activities. Quite a number have been funded by the Donor Basket Fund of the 2000 elections, including organizations such as TAWL, ForDIA, Political Risk Analysis (PORIS), Tanzania Youth Awareness Trust (TAYOA) and the Centre for Human Rights Promotion. The Basket Fund has supported a range of voter education initiative methods of raising awareness, such civic education though drama, music and dance have also been experimented with through groups such as Rulu Arts Performers, Amani Ensemble and the Performing Arts Faculty at the University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM). A number of recent studies, including the evaluation from the 1995 elections have suggested that these forms of “entertainment” provide some of the best ways of conveying messages to grassroots communities where many of the people are illiterate or semi-literate9.
Whilst support to voter educations activities in the context of elections is important, one of the main complaints leveled by civil society at donors in Tanzania, has been the latter’s failure to follow-up their election related support with longer term civic education. If a culture of respect for democratic norms and nature political participation is to be cultivated in Tanzania, it is essential that more continuous civic education is conducted, particularly in the rural areas.
It is equally important, however, that civic education is properly grounded in poor people’s own experience and relates to their everyday lives. One such example of this are the Democracy For a which have been established in a number of district of the country by the Research for Education for Democracy in Tanzania (REDET) programme at the University of Dar es Salaam. The for a are designed as places for the discussion for advocacy and lobbying at the local level. They are organized in such a way that they are open to all members of the community and do not become dominated by vested interests. For example, to ensure maximum inclusivity they must be held in neutral venues and not places of worship, drinking establishment or government offices.
Another concern of democracy CSOs over the past few years has been the status of the country’s constitution. As a result, more than 40 CSOs have joined together under the banner of the Citizen Coalition for a New Constitution led by the LHRC. The stated aim of this coalition is to replace the 1977 constitution which as drafted during the single party era with one which is founded on the “will of the people” and which-party democracy. The Coalition suffered a setback, however, with the Government recent package of constitutional amendments which served to increase the power of the president in a number of key respects10. Despite this, the CSOs concerned have pledged to step up their advocacy and public awareness efforts on this issue after the elections.
The churches represent one of the most effective vehicles for taking civic education messages to the people, especially in the rural areas. This is attested to by the fact that in the 1995 elections, 40% of respondents in the evaluation exercise identified the church (or mosque) as their principal means of acquiring civic education information(Samji et al;2000). The churches also benefit from being accorded with levels of respect and trust by their adherents, which no NGO could hope to match.
The three main church organizations in Tanzania are: - (i) The Christian Council of Churches (CCT), which is an umbrella group of 14 different Protestant Church spread throughout Tanzania (ii) Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC), which is the organisation on the Catholic Church and (iii) The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania (ECLT), which is the largest church under the CCT umbrella.
All of the main church organizations have departments which concentrate on social, economic and political matters. The TEC conducts civic education and awareness raising activities through its CARITAS department and its Justice and Peace Secretariats, the latter of which are present in all 19 of its dioceses. It is currently involved in a civic education project in 350 schools (both Catholic and Protestant), for which it has disseminated a text book and has provided training for civic education teachers. It has also been running a follow-up programme to the 1995 elections, which includes the holding of workshop in which people are encouraged to assess the performance of the Government against election promises made in 1995.
Like the TEC the CCT has been heavily involved awareness-raising and civic education activities. Through its Justice and Peace Unit, it is engaged in a number of initiatives including an Economic Justice programme to increase the involvement of civil society and communities in economic monitoring, as well as a sensitization campaign on the Constitution which is being part-funded by Christian Aid. It also plans to establish Human Right Task Forces in six zones of the country which will be responsible for raising awareness of human rights issues amongst local communities and monitoring abuses of those rights.
In addition to their civic education work, all three church organizations have developed prominent political profiles through their advocacy campaigns and their criticism of certain government policies. For example, the Catholic Church’s Kiongozi newspaper is at times so critical that is editors have been questions and the paper threatened with banning. Similarly, the CCT has issued a number of public pronouncements on the status of the Constitution which have provoked angry responses from the Government.
Despite continuing rivalries in some areas, there has been increased collaboration between the Protestant and Catholic churches in recent years. This was fomalised in 1992 with the establishment of the Tanzania Ecumenical Dialogue Group (TEDG). TEDG is a think-tank and democracy organisation whose members are draw from CCT and TEC. Its main objectives are to stimulate discussions of social, economic and political issues within with the church and society, as well as to provide the church with a united voice in its dealings with the government and outside benefactors. The TEDG was involved in both civic education and the training of monitors for the 1995 elections and since that time has been involved in holding workshops, lobbying and publishing research on a range of issues.
For the 2000 election, the TEC, CCT and TEDG are collaboration on a large-scale voter education project covering the whole of Tanzania. The aim of the project is to bring voter education down to parish and congregational level through a tiered of training of trainers workshops and a variety of other media (e.g. dram, debates, essay competitions, group discussions, news-letters, posters).
Two other lay Christian organisation, the National Council of Catholic Laity and Christian Professionals of Tanzania (CPT), have also been involved in the provision of civic education. The main Muslim umbrella organisation, BAKWATA, however, has so far not been involved in any large-scale civic education or other awareness-raising activities.
Prior to birth of the multiparty era, the media in Tanzania was seen primarily as a toll of government intended to convey information down to the people. The notion of the press as a watchdog, monitoring the performance was not well appreciated or understood. Whilst this mind-set is slowly beginning to change, it is widely accepted that there is some way to go before a truly independent and effective media emerges in Tanzania.
Although the ownership structure of the media has become more diverse in recent years, it continues to be dominated by the three main media houses: IPP, Habari Corporation and the Business Times Group, in addition to the Government and CCM-owned press. There are currently 15 daily newspaper and 20 or so weeklies in Tanzania, although their combined circulation is not thought to amount to much more than 100,000 per day. This compares extremely unfavorably with Kenya where a single newspaper, the Daily Nation, has a circulation of 150,000. One of the main problems is poor distribution systems which mean that majority of the population in the rural areas are not served by the national press. There are also very few local newspaper or community radio stations, with the exception of those being run by NGOs or the churches (e.g. Radio Tumaini).
One of the main complaints against the media in Tanzania is that its proprietors are more interested in profit than producing quality publications. As a result very little criticism of the government or its policies is aired in the mainstream press and despite its new-found freedom, it continues to adhere to a system of self-censorship. Whilst harassment of the press by the Government has become less common-place, intimidation of individual journalists, particularly in rural areas, is still a major problem.
Another key problem which the media In Tanzania faces is the poor quality of journalistic standards. It is estimated that as many as 60% of journalists in Tanzania have not received formal training of any kind. Many lack even basic writing skills and the concept of investigative reporting is largely alien. The journalistic profession is also blighted by the related problems of low pay and corruption, which have caused its reputation for honest and impartial reporting to be further undermined.
The main training institution in the country is the government-owned Tanzania School of Journalism (TSJ) which offers bachelors and post-graduate diplomas in journalists. Whilst the TSJ is widely recognized to offer a good quality education for aspiring journalists, it has suffered in recent years from chronic under-investment by the government. This has led to a serious shortage of badly needed facilities, such as accommodation for students from outside Dar es Salaam, and other items including books, computers and other learning equipment. In order to improve the status of the school and address its funding problems, the TSJ is now considering becoming part of the University of Dar es Salaam. Not only would such as move ensure that the TSJ is recognized as an institution of higher learning, but it would also enable it to offer a broader education to its students in the disciplines of sociology, economics and politics, as well as hands-on journalistic training.
The two main private training institutions are St. Augustine’s University in Mwanza and Tumaini University in Iringa, both run by the Catholic Church. One organizations which offer training courses for journalism are Media Institute of Southern Africa-Tanzania (MISATAN), the Dar es Salaam School of Journalism, Habari Corporation, the Research and Education Institute (RETI), Zanzibar Television and the Zanzibar Commercial Institute.
There are two main professional association for the media in the country: the official Tanzania Association of Journalists (TAJA), which is funded by the Ministry of Information, and the Association of Journalist and Media Workers (AJM). TAJA has been rapidly losing members in recent years to the AJM, which has a more independent profile. Although currently registered as a non-profit making organisation under the Societies Act, the AJM has applied to the Ministry of Labour and Youth to change its status into a Trade Union so that it can properly represent its members interests, particularly in negotiations with media owners over pay and conditions.
At the present time, the AJM is concentrating mainly on providing training for practicing journalists, and it has been funded to conduct such activities by DANIDA, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and Freidrich Ebert Stiftung (FES). It is also currently collaboration with the TSJ to provide course in election reporting throughout Tanzania. The AJM’s main problem is its current lack of capacity to provide a full range of services to its members. Since membership fees are extremely small (2000 Tshs annum) and the only additional funds it receives are for discrete training activities, the AJM can not afford to purchase permanent premises and has no full-time, salaried members of staff. It is looking therefore to get core support from donors which would allow it to invest in capacity-build in order to become more sustainable over the long term.
In addition to the main journalist association, there are also 15 region press clubs in Tanzania, some of which some are affiliated to the AJM and other which are autonomous. The levels of activity of these press clubs is extremely variable with some serving as genuine focal points for journalists at the regional level, whilst others are completely dormant.
The main institution responsible for the regulation of the press in Tanzania is the Media Council. The Media Council was registered as an independent umbrella organisation for the media in 1997 following a long battle with the Government who wanted to make it into a officially sanctioned statutory body over which it could exercise oversight. Its principal function is to adjudicated over complaints relating to the conduct of the media brought by members of the public, NGOs, opposition politicians and even government ministers. By virtue of its impartial handling of complaints, the Media Council has developed a reputation for honesty and independence which has ensured that it enjoys a strong standing across Tanzania society. It currently receives core funding from the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA) and has also been funded by the Donor Basket Groups to co-ordinate the media monitoring exercise for the 2000 election.
Corruption throughout the pubic sector represents one of the major impediments to honest and effective government in Tanzania. It is therefore somewhat surprising that there is currently very few civil society organizations in Tanzania which are activity involved in anti-corruption activities.
In many developing countries, one of the key focal points for promoting ideas and strategies to counter corruption is the international anti-corruption organisation, Transparency International (TI).
There is one Dar-based organization, The Front Against Corrupt Elements in Tanzania (FACEIT), which has been working on corruption for a number of years. FACEIT was initially formed by a number of years. FACIIT was initially formed by a group of engineers who were concerned about the growing prevalence of corruption within their sector, although its current mandate is now much broader. Despite the being established in 1994, FACEIT only received registration under the Societies Act earlier 2000 after a number of previous applications were rejected by the Ministry of Home Affairs. FACEIT has so far been limited in the number of activities it has been able to undertake due to its previous quasi-legal status. However, it now intends to concentrate principal on research activities with an initial focus on four corruption-related areas: financial discipline and management; procurement; civil society; and whistle blowers and witness protection. It is hoped that this research will feed into the Government’s National Anti-Corruption Strategy and Action Plan, which FACEIT helped to draft.
Another organisation which has recently been formed to address corruption issues in the Tanzania Civic Monitor (TACIMO). Comprised of interested individuals from outside the government, TACIMO was initially established by the Prevention of Corruption as the “Follow Up Group” to monitor the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Strategy. Its members were of the view, however, that it would be preferable to reconstitute the group as an independent civic body which would enable a wider forum of individuals and organizations engaged in anti-corruption activities to participate. TACIMO has therefore drawn up its own Constitution and is currently seeking registration as a Trustee.
UNDP is developing a project proposal, for which it is seeking cost-sharing partners, to support the complementary roles of the PCB and TACIMO in relation to the National Anti-Corruption Strategy. One of the primary aims of the project is to sensitize the population about the causes and effects of corruption and in so doing, to build public coalition in the fight against it. Amongst the specific proposals outline are for the publications of a regular PCB newsletter, an Annual State of Corruption report, and publicity campaigns conducted by a wide cross-section of CSOs and the media.
There are only independent research organizations in Tanzania. The Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) is one such example, which was established in 1993 and now has approximately 20 staff, including six engaged in full-time research. ESRF’s main interests are in economic and social policy analysis, development management and other activities aimed at enhancing the understanding of policy options by government, the donor community, civil society and private sector. It has an extensive work programme which consists of in-house research, commissioned research and various policy dialogue initiatives, including conferences and workshops. Another similar organisation is Research on Poverty Alleviation (REPOA) although its remit is more narrowly focused on poverty related issues.
The Eastern South African Research University Programme (ESAURP) is an independent inter-university research organisation which was established in the late 1907’s. It is jointly owned by 16 Eastern and Southern African countries through their national universities and its Secretariat is based in Dar es Salaam. ESAURP established its reputation by publishing research on governance-related issues, although is also involved in training and capacity-building activities.
Research for Education for Democracy in Tanzania (REDET) programme at the University of Dar es Salaam, which is funded by DANIDA, and Political Risk Analysis (PORIS) have produced a stead stream of research papers and publication on governance themes in recent-years. Other prominent human rights published studies on a range of issues in the rights and justice field.
There are currently 13 registered political parties in Tanzania, five of which are represented in parliament. These are: -
Chama cha Mapinduzi (CCM), Civic United Front (CUF), Chama cham Demokrasia na Maendeleo (CHADEMA), The United Democratic Party (UDP), National Convention for Construction and Reform Mageuzi (NCCR-Mageuzi).
Whilst the NCCR in the mailand and CUF in Zanziabar made significant inroads in the 1995 elections, none of the opposition parties have thus far managed to present a serious and sustained challenge to the hegemony of the ruling CCM. Most of the parties are far behind the CCM in terms of organisation capacity and resources, which is hardly surprising given the CCM’s strong commitment to building-up its political structures through out the country during its many years in power. The ability of opposition parties to get their message across through the media is also extremely limited due to the lack of a genuine, independent press.
One of the main problems, however, has been the consistent failure on the part of the oppositions to articulate a coherent political alternative to the CCM. Few of the parties have clearly defined programmes to distinguish them from each another and most tend to rely primary on criticisms of the government for their appeal. Internal squabbling and functionalism has also served to limit the opposition’s influence on the political scene. This has been most starkly illustrated in the case of the NCCR which, from being the most prominent challenger to the CCM in 1995, has now been reduced to a rump organisation a series of internal feuds and defections to other parties. In this context, a number of parties have become little more than person vehicle for individual politicians and as a result, they often lack internal democratic procedure or links to any particular constituency on the ground.
A number of donors have been involved in efforts to strengthen the capacity of political parties across a range of areas. DANIDA, SIDA, the Finnish Development Agency (FINNIDA) and FES, for example, have been engaged in a four-year joint project called the Parliamentary Political Parties Committee which aims to train party leaders at the grassroots on a number of key issues including.
· Party formation, organisation and management;
· The role of political parties in building democracy and political, economic and social change.
· Constitution, good governance and the rule of the law;
· Political tolerance and conflict resolution between parties;
· Gender and democratization.
The Scope: A comparison of the status of Civil Society sector between the early 1980s and the present time informs us that there has been some rapid growth of the sector in all the three aspects mentioned above. In general also the civil society groups have diversified the scope of intervention from being primarily focused on service to a broad range of activities including advocacy on human rights and good governance, political participation, empowerment of marginalized groups and people, the promotion of gender equality and equity, and improvement of social services.
Civil society organizations in Tanzania currently include a number of categories. Example of the most outstanding ones are: -
· Political parties e.g. Civil United Front (CUF) and Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM).
· Trade Union Media Organisations e.g. Tanzania Media Women Association (TAMWA) and Journalists Environment Team (JET).
· Human Rights and Legal Aid Organisations e.g. Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC) and Women Legal Aid Clinic (WLAC)
· Democracy and Good Governance advocacy groups e.g. Forum for Development Initiative in Africa (ForDIA) and Tanzania Ecumenical Dialogue Group (TEDG)
· Poverty Eradication and development-oriented organization e.g. Taaluma Women Group (TWG) and CARITAS
· Training and capacity building organizations e.g. Training and Facilitation Centre for NGOs (TRACE) and East Africa Support Unit for NGOs (EASUN)
· Research and consultancy organizations e.g. Economic and Social Research Foundation (ESRF) and Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP)
· Organisations concentrating on the rights of specific groups e.g. Women, Children and the early, youth farmers, small minors and traders etc. Tanzania Association for Mentally Handicapped (TAMH) and KULEANA.
· Religious affiliated organizations e.g. Moslem Women Association (BAKWATA) and Wanawake Wakatoliki Tanzania (WAWATA)
· Professional Organisations e.g. Tanzania Women Leaders in Agriculture and Environment (TAWLAF) and Medical Women Association of Tanzania (MEWATA)
· Umbrella organization involved in co-ordination, Capacity Building, Advocacy and Information sharing e.g. Tanzania Association of Non Governmental Organizations (TANGO) and Tanzania Council for Social Development (TACOSODE).
Numbers and Size: The civil society organizations and especially NGOs have also greatly increased in number. According to the NGO Policy statement it is estimated that there are about four thousand (4,000) NGOs operating in Tanzania. The estimated increase is about ten times compared to the number in the early 1990s. Apart from the increase in overall number, individual NGOs have continuously been increasing in membership and size.
Impact: Another aspect which explains the growth of the sector is the impact it has in society. This is seen in terms of raising critical awareness among the people on their civic, political, economic and cultural rights and duties and how to demand them, but also in the provision of (social) services, like health, education, legal aid etc. Others endeavour to empower the people to participate in decisions and policy formulation and analysis in accordance to their felt needs, e.g. KIHACHA (Right to Food). There is also a growing tendency for NGOs to form coalitions, alliances and networks in order to enhance impact in the society, especially on issues related to policies and rights.
NGOs today are considered important partners in development and there is an increase in the consultative process between NGOs and the state sector. Due to their proactive stance, NGOs / CSOs like TANGO, TGNP, HAKIARDHI, TCDD, HAKIELIMU, TAWMA, TAWLA, TWG, KIHACHA and several others are influence decisions made at the state and local government’s level.
What is an NGO?
An NGO is normally formed voluntarily by as group of more than one person or more than one organization. It is free to make its own decision and plan its own activities or to close down (autonomous). Members of such groups are more motivated and committed, and hence sometimes put in extra effort in items of time and energy.
According to the National Policy of Non Governmental Organizations (Vice Presidents office, November 2001) an NGO is defined as: “…..a voluntary grouping of individuals or organizations which is autonomous, non partisan and not for profit sharing; organized locally at the grassroots level, nationally or internationally for the purpose of enhancing the legitimate economic, social and / or cultural development or lobbying of advocating on issues of public interest or interest of a groups of individuals or organizations”.
In a simplified way, one can define NGO as “A voluntary group of person of organizations formed to fulfill a mission in a society without sharing profit or seeking political power”.
Not all CSOs are NGOS. Example of CSOs that are not NGOs include: Trade Unions, social clubs, entertainment and sports clubs, political parties and faith-propagating organizations.
Why is an NGO Formed?
An NGO is formed to solve a problem or a need in a community, society or nation. A problem or a need is defined in a community, e.g. deaths of children and mothers in a village. Concerns such as the lack of health services in a village, which cause high mortality rates to mothers and children. An individual or a group of people takes note of the problem and decides to do something about it. The individuals share the problem or need with other people and thinks of possible solutions with others. Then, as a group, they share the problem with the community around them through creating awareness. Some people will agree with their argument and join them to solve the problem. Finally and voluntarily, the people will organize themselves and form a group of founders who will draft a constitution of the organization.
For a membership organization, the founder members will invite other like-minded people to join them as members. They convene members meeting to approve the constitution and proceed with registration. In case of a non-membership organization, the founders will identify and nominate trustees and then convene a meeting for the trustees to approve the constitution and proceed with registration. They will jointly agree where to register their NGO, i.e. with the Ministry of Home Affairs if it an association; Ministry of Justice and Constitutional Affairs if it is a Trustee incorporation; or the Ministry of Trade and Industry if it is a Company depending on its goals and objectives.
As soon as the NGO starts operating, it should go on involving all stakeholders in the activities of the NGO in order to give key stakeholders more ownership of the NGO.
Classification of NGOs
There are different ways of classifying NGOs; for the purpose of this assignment we will classify them as follows:
1. Registration of NGOs
2. Local NGOs
3. National NGOs
4. International NGOs
5. Non membership NGOs
6. Membership NGOs
7. Indigenous NGOs
8. Foreign NGOs
The first category is of those NGOs which are involved in delivery of services and maintain access by people to basic social services (health, education, and water, financial and other services). They normally work directly with the community.
The second category of those NGOs generally involved in campaigning, advocating and lobbying for the poor: they do this by: -
· Raising awareness among poor people of their civic, political and legal rights and responsibilities
· Equipping poor and disadvantages groups to participate effectively in democratization and decision-making process.
· Advocating on behalf of the poor so as to increase their influence on government policies and practice.
Within these two categories you find membership NGOs, which are set up by members with the intention of benefiting the members (e.g. TANGO) or non-membership. NGOs set up by individuals with the intention of benefiting others who are not connected to the NGOs (e.g. TRACE). Some also operate at district level (e.g. SANGO), regional level (e.g. DONET) or national level (e.g. TGNP). Moreover, the NGOs an either be local (e.g. TAMWA) or foreign (e.g. SNV).
There is also a tendency for many NGOs especially in category two, to work together through networks or coalition so as to increase their capacity to influence policies, in the country, e.g. networks at district and regional level like SANGO and DONET. Also, some NGOs have emerged to support and give capacity to other so that they can perform to the required standard, e.g. EASUN, TRACE etc.
In rhetoric, President Nyerere was concerned with participation of the people in the development process. The problem was that this participation was to be through the party only. The Ruvuma Development Association for example, which organized communal production and provided social services to its members, was disbanded in 1969 as the regional authorities saw its autonomy and emphasis on democracy as a threat. Smaller community based organizations like women’s savings clubs (upato) were generally not interfered with.
Although there is general agreement amongst civil society on the need for an NGO policy, concern still remain about some elements of both the policy and the proposed legislation. Lissu (2000) has argued, for example, that NGOs will be subject to increasing government control under plans for the establishment of a single Registrar of Organisations within the Vice Presidents Office which will be responsible for all matters related to registration, function, operation and deregistration of NGOs. Although an NGO Co-ordination Board consisting mainly of civil society representative is also provided for, it is not clear what its roles and responsibilities will be vis-à-vis the Registrar. The retention of the provision that precludes NGOs from becoming involved in any activities which could be interpreted as “political” is a source of further controversy. Since the term political is not defined, such a prohibition could conceivably be deployed to restrict the participation of NGOs in advocacy campaigns pushing for various legal of constitutional reforms.
Between 1974 and 1988 real wages fell by 83% and the state was unable to private even the minimum of social services. Achievements in the health and education sector were reversed. In response to this, more people became self employed, and many organized themselves in welfare organizations that could be based on religious, regional, ethnic or professional affiliation. The authorities close to ignore their earlier ban of these types of organization. There were two main reasons for the allowance of these organizations. First national integration had consolidated since independence; secondly the government had come to realize their own in capability regarding service delivery.
In the early 1980s, fifteen years after the education system had been nationalized, the government opened up for non-state secondary schools. A few years later, in 1986, they went further, calling upon churched and other non-governmental organizations to play an even greater role in the provision of education and health care services. In less than years (1984-1992), the number of NGO run schools tripled from 85 in to 258.
Even such a basic state responsibility as security, was taken over by the people themselves as the police force was said to be bribed by criminals. The defence teams were organized all over the country under different names, the most common being sungusungu. In some areas regional and district leaders tried to suppress them, but in Dar es Salaam they were formalized after years of debate. Reportedly the number of murders and armed robberies feel dramatically. The state’s acceptance of sungusungu in 1990 marked a new era concerning the government view ob civil society in general. After protracted negotiation, trade unions and cooperatives were detached from CCM and were now legally free to set up their own constitutions and elect their own leaders. As mentioned earlier, the government had come to realize that with the condition of structure adjustment, the non-government sector would have to play a vital role in the delivery of services and a variety of organizations soon entered the space left open by the withdrawal of the state.
During the 1980s the donor community actively distributing aid to Tanzania adopted the international trend of by-passing inefficient and corrupt state bureaucracies in order to channel their aid through international and locally based NGOs. NGOs were believed to be more efficient, less corrupt, and operating more efficient, less corrupt, and operating more closely with the poor. The Tanzania government was quick to notice this trend and responded by setting up apparently independent NGOs that were staffed by civil servant. The government also appointed regional officials charged with the responsibilities of encouraging the development of women’s activities and helping them to acquire funds from donors. In this way the regional officials helped the government secure some control over the funds. As living conditions worsened, unemployed was on the rise, and as people in all walks of life realized the willingness of donors to give direct support to NGOs and CBOs, the number of organizations exploded. In 1993, there were 224 registered NGOs in Tanzania. Seven years later, in 2000, the number 8499. (Friend Ebert 1999 and Trip 2000).
Types of organizations and geographical distribution
The last directory of Tanzania NGOs was published in 1995. It has listed 6 international and 49 local NGOs. The directory classifies the local NGOs according to their main activities: - District Development Trusts (198), Religions organizations (155), Social service organizations (106), Professional/education organizations (98), Environment organizations (64), Women groups (56), Health organizations (43), Youth organizations (26), Umbrella organizations (3).(Development journal;2002).
This directory does certainly not cover all the organizations that were active in 1995, but the distribution of activities still gives us some idea of what some Tanzania NGOs are preoccupied with. Concerning the geographical distribution, studies have shown that developmental NGO activities are concentrated in the following areas (listed alphabetically): - Arusha, Dar es Salaam, Dodoma, Iringa, Kilimanjaro, Mbeya, Morogoro (Hayata and Mathew 1995).
Generally, the district and regions that were favoured in colonial times received the greater share of foreign NGO and donor project, and have more locally initiated Community Development Activities (CDAs). Of the Christian NGO schools for example, almost one-third (43 out 0f 154) are situated in Kilimanjaro alone; even the Muslim schools as concentrated in this region. Dodoma is traditionally a poor area, but has high NGO activity as the capital city is situated in this region.
According to Tanzania’s Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper, the most deprived regions of the country are Dodoma, Kagera, Lindi, Kigoma and Coast (Government of Tanzania 2000).
POLICE REVIEW ON NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATION
As per National poverty Eradication strategy (2000), it have been recommended that Non-governmental organizations are important agencies in poverty eradication programmes due to the fact that they are close to the people and sometimes formed and managed by the communities. Their role and responsibilities will therefore be: -
· Building local capacity and empowering communities through establishing sustainable development project with view of enabling self reliance among the people.
· Collaborating and coordinating with other stakeholders in programme design and implementation in order to avoid overlapping of activities.
· Participating in monitoring and evaluation of activities.
· Mobilizing and enhancing community participation in poverty eradication programmes.
· Assisting the people particularly women in designing strategies to contribute in their own development.
· Mobilizing community resources such as material and human needed for poverty eradication programmes.
· Collaborating with donors in poverty eradication programmes.
Tanzania is among the signatory countries to the Cotonou Agreement, cooperation signed in June 2000 between the European Union and a group of countries in Africa, the carribeans and Asia (collectively known ACP groups). Tanzania has beneficed from this aid envelope granted without the framework of the 9th European Development Fund (EDF) which finances the ACP EC cooperation covering the period 2002 to 2007 as laid down in the line current country strategy paper. In line with stipulation of cotonou agreement, the are committed to the involvement of Non-State Actors (NSAs) in the implementation to the current CSP.
The strategy recognizes NSAs s important partners in the realization of its objectives. It recognizes that NSAs involvement in development process help to ownership. The CSP is committed to deepening NSA participation in all sectors of national development. To this end the strategy recommends strengthening the capacity NSA, particularly in terms of research and analysis. Communication, networking, lobbying and advocacy.
In 2006 the Government of Tanzania signed an agreement with the European delegation to implement this programme to support NSAs in Tanzania under the National Authorizing office this programme is to empower Non-State Actor to be informed of and contribute to the formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of development policies and process at all level in a more structured manner. Thus, the programme facilitates a deepening and broadening of public participation in national development process. This in turn is intended to help nurture a culture of an accountability, transparency and civic responsiveness in national process.
To carry out implementation of the programme the Ministry of Finance has established Programme Management and Facilitation Unit (PMFU), the operations of which are guided by a 17 member coordinating committee.
A Summary of Strengths and Weaknesses of the Civil Society Organizations
The presentation above gives an idea of the complex of the Tanzania NGO sector. The various organizations are working with very different objectives in mind and with different financial and organizational resources. In areas where one type of organizations is strong, other may be weak. While the elite based advocacy organizations are strong in financial terms for example, they are weak in membership base. It would thus be meaningless to generalize on the civil society in Tanzania as a whole, but some major features stand out. First, there is a strong tendency to top-down approaches. As discussed in the introduction, civil society should ideally be the voice of the people. In Tanzania however, organizations tend to be formed by resource persons, who reach out to the grassroots, and not be the other way around.
Organisations argued that the lack of involvement from the people’s side is due to lack of awareness of their rights, and also lack of knowledge as to how these rights can be voiced and channeled into the government system. Another argument has been the develop “culture of silence” among the people, especially in rural areas of Tanzania. However it is important to keep in mind that it is not only the level of consciousness in the people that limit the participate and organize themselves in the organised civil society activities. In this context it must be regarded as positive that some people fight the cause for other-even if they thus set the agenda for the people they claim to work for.
The organizations try involve people through awareness building and training. Most organisation that carry out workshop and training progeammes seem to have potential to do so well, but the question that needs to be raised is whether workshop and training course reaches out to the need groups of the population. It is important in this connection to explore the possibility that in the Tanzania context there might be other arenas where people meet and other networks that do not necessarily include formally organized meeting places. There is a need to investigate the potential of these arenas to further strengthen the civil society, but the timeframe of this study does not allow us to go into this issue.
We should also remember that a strong civil society is characterized by the power to influence on macro level, and in this regard some Tanzania organizations, especially the elite-based ones, have been quite successful.
Organizations active in social service delivery
Despite regional variety, the non-government sector plays an important role in service delivery all over the country, surpassing that of the state in most fields save for primary education. In the nine district covered by a study by Kiondo in 1993, non-government actors were running 61 per cent of the secondary schools, 87 per cent of the nursery schools and 45,5 per cent of the hospital. The percentages are probably significantly higher today.
The central actors in the provision of secondary schools are district developed trusts, religious organizations as well as Tanzania Parents Association (earlier under the party wing).
District Development Trust
Eight hundred and fifty District Development Trust, similar to “Hometown associations” are said to have been formed between 1960 and 1991, the most associations” are said to have been formed between 1960 and 1991, the number of active period being from 1980 onwards. DDTs are active in a number of fields. First and foremost the DDTs have themselves taken on the task of providing secondary. In Newala for example, the government did not provide one single secondary school during the first three decades after the quality of the schools vary, but some of them are considered the best in the country.
Like the Muslim congregations, Christian churches are supported by foreign benefactors; Considerable sums are also collected among the local congregations however. While the larger part of this collection is used for paying the religious leaders for their services, there are also cases where considerable support is given to church members with little means. Involvement with the church may thus be important for social security through the congregation as a collective, or collective, or through networking among individual church members.
This category span from small community based organization (CBOs) that may organize local women or youth, to high profile advocacy groups and mass organizations like trade unions. In contrast to the category that we have just discussed, they do not engage in large-scale service delivery. Of these organizations, the small and unknown are propably the ones with the highest collective membership base. As long as their informal character does not require them to register, and as long as they don’t approach donors for funding, however, they seem to remain somewhat invisible. A case in point is the rotating saving clubs (upato) that about fifty percent of the urban self-employed women are found to be members of”. The clubs wholly depend upon mutual trust, and enable women to make investments that would be impossible without this system. Another common form of organization which does not easily fall into any for our category are dance groups. We will come back to them in chapter 6. In this chapter however, we will focus on the more conventionally organized associations.
Community Development Activity (CDA)
Community Development Activity organizations (CDAs) are community based collective income generating projects and they are almost entirely organized by women. Typing project are sewing, brewing, milk production and processing, shop-keeping and guest houses.
Each group may have a membership ranging form five to several hundred members. Some of them have their basis in a church, others are neighbours or friends who have started a business together.
The groups may get support from foreign donors/NGOs as well as from individual politicians who use their patron status as part of their own self-promotion. The degree of external support varies from district to district, however. Kiondo found that in Kilimanjaro for example, all but one of the groups had substantial external support, while NGO/donor support was almost absent in Tanga. The groups in Tanga pooled resources from their members and also took up commercial bank loans. In Kilimanjaro, on the other hand, there was a tendency for the associations to be started by the wives of influential men who then secured them access to prominent benefactors at the national level. Kiondo also found that both CCM and CUF have donated money to CDAs to win political support in areas where they are weak, and in several cases the CDAs themselves were initiated in order to get these funds. Not surprisingly, donor money has also catalyses new CDA groups that may not prove to be viable in the long run.12
Organizations working for the rights of their membership
As part of the development of the civil society and the increased focus on and support to NGOs, people are increasingly organizing themselves on the group of some commonality to further their interest. This form of organizations are often supported by their sister organizations in donor countries. The scope of this report allows us to mention only a few, and our focus will be on health organizations, farmers’ organizations and trade unions.
Among the central organizations concerned with health are Tanzania Association of the Disabled, Tanzania Association for Mentally Handicapped and WAMATA (working for the rights of people living with HIV/AIDS.13 These Dar es Salaam based organizations function as umbrella organizations for smaller community based organizations that do practical work at the grassroots level.
The Amani Centre Mentally Handicapped in Morogoro can serve as an example of such community based organizations (CBOs). The Centre was established in 1989 by the mother of mentally handicapped boy. She was supported by the local Roman Catholic Church, and the Centre is still under the Diocese of Morogoro. The Diocese also runs an orphanage housing 50-60 children. The Amani Centre has 200 registered members, and offers day care and educations to about 40 children in the age 1-18 years. In centre’s main donor in now CARITAS, while the government pays the salary of the Programme Coordinator.
Another example of organizations that care set up to promote the interest of specific groups in MVIWATA (Mtandao wa Vikundi vya Wakulima Tanzania). MVIWATA is a network for small scale farmers established in 1993. The network sprang out of a project initiated by the Sokoine University of Agriculture, and comprises 75 local networks in 16 regions (again with a higher concentration aims at defending farmers’ rights as well as functioning as a communication network to exchange ideas and experiences. One of the major issues is access to credit. The organization cites good result with the establishment of a de-centralised farmers’ bank based on local resources where only resident farmers were given loans. As with the tradition upato saving clubs, localized social control mechanisms increases the pay-back rates. The organization has had a number of sponsors, the main donor now being the French FERT. Donor money is mainly used for training workshops and meeting for regional representative.
After thirty years of state controlled workers unions, the government opened up for autonomous trade unions in 1995. Eleven trade unions were opened up for autonomous trade unions in 1995. Eleven trade unions were formed that year. A party from the Teachers’ unions however, these unions were denied separate registration under the Trade Unions Ordinance of 1948. they have not been hindered from conducting their activities however, and they are all members of the umbrella organization Tanzania Federation on Free Trade Unions (TFTU), French Ebert Stiftung (FES) supports TFTU in general and the Teachers Unions specifically. In late 1999 they also promoted the formation of Tanzania Union of Journalists (TUJ). As of May 1999, around 300 000 workers were organized in 12 unions, the two largest unions being Tanzania Teachers Unions (110 000 members) and Tanzania Union of Industrial and Commercial Workers (81 000 members).
Elite based advocacy organizations working for others.
This category of organizations doffer from the above by having a much more narrow membership base-anything from ten to a few hundred members. Due to their resources and out-reaching activities however, they are highly visible members of the NGO community. The organizations do not generally aim at having a board membership, but rather work for the disadvantage masses through advocacy, training, awareness programmes and co-operation with smaller organizations. As stated in the objectives of Tanzania Gender Networking Programme.
“TGNP is a non-government organization whose ultimate objective is to support social transformation and respond to the needs and interest of poor and disadvantaged women and grassroots communities”
Generally, these are staffed by university educated people, and their major activity is advocacy in their respective fields of concern. Tanzania Women Lawyers Association (TAWLA), Women’s Legal Aid Centre (WLAC) and Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC), for example, all deal with law questions. In 1997 TAWLA joined together with other NGOs to lobby for the new land bill. After this intervention, all new laws are brought to them for comments, something that proves that they are taken seriously by the government. While TAWLA has various donors to sponsor the running of their office and specific programmes, the organizations also conducts much of its work on a voluntary basis. In addition to lobbying, these organizations provide gender awareness programmes and offer special workshops for journalists. Legal and Human Rights Centre have designed an interesting Human Rights Training Programme for the police force and other law enforce.
The established organizations of this category all appear to be pretty well endowed with donor support. TGNP, for example, has been offered so many contributions from different donors that the organization now allocates funds to their partner organizations, and also directs donors to organizations that need funding Representatives for the organization explained that they needed to be focused in order to do job, rather then expanding their activities. Several of the organizations see it as a problem that donors generally sponsor specific programmes only, and not the daily running of their offices, however independence. Newala Development Fund (NDF) on the other hand established no less three schools during the first few years of its existence.
District Development Trusts are an interesting phenomena because the “combine the genuine interest of the masses with self-serving elite initiatives and involvement”.10 The organizations are commonly led by one or more elite politicians or prominent businessman who are based in Dar es Salaam. The trusts collect revenue from peasants, often in the form of a tax on their produce, and the trusts may also arrange fund-rasing dinners. Although the peasant are the main contributors, they have little or no say in the actual administration of the funds, as only members of the elite have the right top vote and to become board members. Generally, these organizations have less popular participation and less accountability than similar organizations during the colonial times, and conflict regularly arise concerning how the collected money is used.
District Development Funds may also be organized by urban neighbors. In this case they are usually categorized as community based organizations (CBOs) and they are organized more democratically. In Dar es Salaam, a common task for these organizations is the maintenance of neighbourhood roads. Typically, the inhabitants will wait for public service until the road in no longer passable on the size of the neighbourhood involved and the task to be done. Some of the better-organised communities infrastructure Programme of the City Council.
Missions were responsible for most of the country’s health care and education up to the nationalization of these institution in the late 1960s. As noted earlier, the government later called upon religious organizations to play a role in the provision of education and health.
Compared to the period before nationalization, Islamic organizations are now playing a far more active role. Muslim organizations run a number of hospitals as well as 15 secondary schools around the country. Two of them provide training for future religious leaders, the rest are open to all, including Christians. The Muslim Council (BAKWATA) plan to build girls’ secondary school in all regions, and a University College in Dar es Salaam. The organization hopes to establish their own radio station, and recently decided that they would encourage and help Muslim start projects for poverty reduction. BAKWATA is an umbrella that includes the major Muslim sub-groups of the country. It is funded by membership and Arab donors, as well as surplus from the school and from the lending of houses. Muslim schools are found to be of generally poor quality compared to the Christian.
Christian denominations are mainly organized under the Christian Council of Tanzania (CCT) and the Tanzania Episcopal Conference (TEC). The two of them collaborate under the umbrella of the Christian Social Services Commission. In 1994, these organizations were running 154 secondary school.
Future Roles of the Civil Societies in Tanzania
The Local Government Reform
The local government reform will decentralize five areas that have previously been under laid the central government: health, education, agriculture, water and infrastructure. The Programme Manager for the Local Government Reform Programmes was very enthusiastic about the reform. He told the team that service delivery from now on would be guined by a policy that simply that service delivery from now on would be guided by a policy that simply says: “Whoever can do it better-let them do it”. He further explained to us that Tanzania was “introducing business principles in running government affairs”.
The most important change to come with this reform is probably the increase activities of the private sector. The various non-governmental organizations that today are active within education and health however, are expected to expand their scope. In the 38 municipalities that have been picked out to start the process, local NGOs and CBOs have been invited to so-called “Stakeholder Workshops” to be informed about the reform and their own role in the new system.
It is beyond the scope of this report to foresee the scenario that will come out of this policy, but on basis of what we know of the present actors within social service delivery (see chapter three) we may point to some areas that need to be considered further.
The Urban-rural Dichotomy
The late Vice President Dr Omar Juma criticized Tanzanian NGOs failing to go to the rural areas where more than 80% of the population lives. Of the total number of registered organization in Tanzania, the majority is probably based in rural areas, but the Vice President probably directed his criticism towards the donor founded urban-based elite organizations. Although a minority in the total NGO sector, these organizations possibly have more resources than all other organizations put together, due to the lavish donor support. All the elite based organizations that we consulted claim to have partners in the districts, but it is beyond the scope of this study to assess how strong these links really are.
Concerning rural-urban links, the religious organizations are in a quite different position than the NGOs. The many religious organizations and societies in Tanzania have a organizational structure that in most cases go from a central headquarter and straight down to the village level, through the local churches and mosques. Furthermore the organizational structure has been in place for a long time, as religious organizations were allowed to operate even during the Nyerere era. Religious organizations have therefore had a chance to develop their organizational skills over the years.
The comparative lack of independent organizations in many rural districts may be caused by a number of factors. First, there are few educated people in the rural areas. To run an organization of any size needs at least a minimum of resources and organizational skills. Secondly, the “culture of silence” that was develop during one-party rule still seems to be present. There is no culture for voicing discontents, not to mention taking action. Thirdly there is a lack of awareness about ones rights when it comes to participation are the development process.
There is a clear trend in the Tanzania civil society that urban based organizations take up the role as advocacy organizations, while the rural based organizations are more into service delivery. As discussed earlier this can be explained by level of education of the advocacy part, while the issues of reciprocity and closeness to the project implemented are of more concern in the rural areas.
If the goal is to develop the civic sector, we should remember that the service delivery activities carried out in rural areas are related to the issues that are advocated for at national level. The lack of services and the need for organizations to fill in the gap are linked to government priorities and policies. Thus, the missing link between the two is an important issue to be raised. We don not argue that all organizations necessarily need to integrate an advocacy part, but they should perhaps consider linking up with organizations that deal with lobbying and advocacy. Similarly, advocacy organizations that deal encouraged to develop their links with organizations that are active in rural areas. KULEANA, the Mwanza based organizations that focuses on the rights of children, is one of the few organizations that have been able to establish a good balance between social service and advocacy.
The work done by the advocacy organisations important and it is our view that these types of organizations should still be supported. Donors have a tendency to channel their funds in the same direction however, to organizations that have proven to be strong and to perform well. Though it is important to keep the strong organization in the ring, there is also a need to build up new organizations, especially organizations that reach out more broadly than the elite based advocacy organizations.
The great challenge of course, is to trace promising initiatives in the rural areas. One possibility is to use the district it to use district networks of the urban-based advocacy organizations and foreign NGOs and donors (like MS, NPA, OXFAM and UNICEF). Another possibility is to go through the local governments. In both cases it is important to target the less privileged areas.
The local government reform will decentralize public administration. It would be natural in this connection to involve the district development trusts. A major problem with the DDTs however, is that they are so undemocratic, headed as they are by the rich and influential. If these trusts are to be supported by the national government or donors, they would have to be organized differently.
The question is whether is grassroot people are actually ready to play a more active role in these organizations. Kiondo notes that popular participation is general extremely low, and that due to the patronage system, voluntary collective action and business activities tend to be seen as identical in the rural societies. He writes that will the exception of secondary school.
“social development tends today to be seen as something which can should be provided by organization of migrants who have made good, Tanzania of foreign NGOs religious organizations, foreign bilateral or multilateral donors or, of course, the state.”20
Several of the foreign organizations that we talked to were frustrated by the fact that people expected to be paid for anything they did, even if it was for their own community. That the level of voluntary organizations was high during the colonial period. The colonial power provided few or non social services-in fact up to the 1960s, social development was not identified with the state. Then with ujamaa, donor intervention and a strong repressive state, people adopted the idea that social services were free and that they were to wait for initiatives from the top before taking any action. It is this attitude that has to be changed if the new political and economic system is to function.
People need to believe that they can do something, and they also need to be willing to contribute with their own resources. Before we look at possible ways of building awareness, we will look into the dynamics of why people are unwilling to pay. We will also discuss some cases where people do actually contribute from their pockets.
Limited Local Funds and the Problem of Fraud.
The urban advocacy organizations do not have a tradition of raising funds from the general public, nor do they have a broad membership that pays membership fees. The local funds are therefore extremely limited. There are NGOs and the services that they can deliver. Secondly, people are generally suspicious towards the misuse of funds. These problems of accountability greatly influence people’ willingness to pay.
The problem of embezzlement and fraud is said to take place in organizations of all types and at all levels. In Newala, the local DDT was close to being disbanded as the local peasant suspected the elite administration of the trust to pocket some of the money. Even church leaders are said to enrich themselves from church funds, especially when money is sent from abroad. There is a widespread suspicion among common people that whoever gets access to foreign funds will embezzle them.
Several people whom the team talked to said to said that the donors would better off posting a foreigner (mzungu) to control the use of the money-or risk the misappropriation of aid. Although this may not be workable advice, we should not only encourage, but also demand a greater degree of transparency on the side of the organizations. During the fieldwork few organizations were willing to give a copy of their annual report to the team (in some case it was somewhat unclear if they had one at all). Several representative also seemed a little uncomfortable when we asked them about their annual budget and their funders. With the new NGO bill this situation hopefully will change to the better.
The new NGO Policy has transparency as one of its main aims. The late Vice President says that the government from now on will “censor all NGOs in the country which pump in money from the donors but never use it for national development”. Taking into account the conflict-ridden relationship between some of the NGOs and the government, donors should attempt to play a mediating role between the two stake-holders. The goal should be to ensure mediating role between the two stake-holders. The goal should be to ensure accountability without limiting the political autonomy of the organizations.
Domestic Fund Raising
A central goal in development work is to reduce the dependency syndrome, and it is thus problematic that so many of the NGOs are totally donor dependent and weak fundraisers. It is important to remember that there is a very strong propensity for fundraising within the Tanzania culture, however. This fundraising generally applies to expenditures connected to wedding and funerals, and occasionally education. The fundraising involve the extended family as well as colleagues and friends. A central aspect of this fundraising is the reciprocity mechanism. The amounts contributed are always written down and kept for later reference. By contributing un-stingily to others, you build up a “social security account” for yourself and your family.
There are some type of NGOs that seem to have been able to transfer this cultural norm to their own benefit. In district development trusts, for example, all the peasant and workers of the district usually contribute, even though the majority of them may never have their child in the secondary school that are set up. The urban based patrons of the trusts arrange charity dinners and also try to influence the government to implement development projects in their respective areas. The urban DDTs, community based organizations that mainly are involved with road construction, are characterized by the same “tradition” mode of though and do not typically require members to pay a fixed membership fee. In one example given to us, neighbours contributed whatever they could afford, ranging from 10 to 200.
Religions organizations are another typical example of institutions that are able to mobile people to contribute to various tasks. Often the fundraising is spearheaded by influential individuals, who in this way establish themselves as patrons. Their groups of clients may come in handy if they later aspire to go into politics or the like. Congregations may also pool together to sponsor unprivileged members of the church. As mentioned above, one of our informants had his whole education paid for by church donation. The investment is not in him alone, as he will be expected to provide for his widowed mother and younger sibling upon completion. The man in question explained to us that an arrangement like this could completion. The man in question explained to us that an arrangement like this could never have taken place in the city, as the social networks are not close enough. Similarly, the Farmer’s Bank initiative in Morogoro (mentioned in chapter three) worked exactly because the bank only gave loans to people within the local community.
The question is what can be done to enhance the awareness about these three issues. We will now present our ideas of the appropriate methods for enhancing this awareness.
Building Awareness-New Paths to be found?
Existing advocacy organizations
There are number of organizations in Tanzania that work on advocacy and awareness. Most of them are those classified as elite based in Dar es Salaam, and several of them are involved in an informal network. Whenever an issue of common interest is to be emphasized, these organizations pull their resources together and advocate the case as a group, as they did with the new land bill in 1997.
These organizations seem to have been successful regarding their ability to affect central authorities, but when it comes to spreading their message to the grassroots, not to mention involving them, they have a long way to go. Contrary to the idealized civil society that grows bottom-up, these organizations are formed by urban resources persons who turn to the grassroots in order to make them organize themselves and demand their rights. The impression one gets is that it is easier for the elite based organizations to work for the grassroots than with them.
The organizations that were interviewed by the team all seemed to focus on workshops as a vehicle for their awareness programmes. While workshops may be good for training NGO members, they seldom reach the unorganized people. Up to now, Tanzania have not been too eager to organize themselves in formal ways, and the question is whether donors should push for western-style association if they do not fit into the local way of ding things.
Rather, one should explore the arenas where Tanzanians do meet and the kind of networks they make here. Such meeting places tend to be gendered. Men meet in public places like work places, coffee shops or bars and pen public spaces. Here they spend their time discussing politics and current issues, playing games and so on. For men working in the informal and private sector, these meeting places can be very important for their economic livelihood as business partners and other contacts are met there. In the words of one informant: “Only very rich men can afford not to go to the local bar”. In a system where personal networks counts more than formalized bureaucratic procedures, such meeting places are also important for building relationship to people in governmental posts-be it police officers or other civil servants who are “gate keepers” when it comes to obtaining licenses and permits. Women’s activities are often organized in or around the household spheres, but the also spend consideration time in hair saloons, visiting friends or attending life-cycle rituals.
We don not mean to say that such informal networks and groups should be the new recipients of donors support, but they should be taken into consideration when one questions the seemingly low interest for formal organization. Also the fact that few people are formally organized, should have a consequence for the implementing of awareness programmes. While workshops and brochures tend to reach a few people only, mass media and popular culture has a much wider audience.
There are organizations that specifically focus on media, like Tanzania Media Women Association (TAMWA), and Journalists for Environment in Tanzania (JET) but generally there seem to be much more coverage of NGO activities in the English language newspaper than in the Swahili ones-which do have a much bigger audience. One reason why NGOs present their work in English papers rather than the Swahili ones may be that they want to visualize their work to present and prospective donors.
We would suggest that donors encourage the advocacy organizations to use the media more actively, and then especially the media that is consumed by ordinary people. Media institutions could also be contacted directly and be asked to focus on given issues. There are two important factors that we need to bear in mind concerning the media in Tanzania, however. First, the media situation is strongly affected by the urban-rural dichotomy. Secondly, the government has till not been willing to open up for total press freedom. No private radio or television company is allowed to have national coverage, for example.
Mass Media and Popular Culture
The number of newspaper has exploded since the political liberalization. On the side of Swahili papers, there are now nine dailies and 41 newspaper that are being issued 1-8 time a month. The largest daily is Majira with a circulation of 30 000). In comparison, Uhuru, which was earlier the only accepted paper, has a circulation of 11 000 only, while Daily News and the Guardian have 12 000 each.
The press is said to constitute the real political opposition in Tanzania often publishing stories on fraud and mismanagement on the side of politicians. Readers’ letters are also frequently used to voice discontent with local district officers, magistrates and the like. The so-called cartoons are perhaps the most interesting aspect of the new press, commenting on current issues and politics in a away that is not possible in written text. Although now supposedly “free”, the press does still not operate completely independently. Attempts have been made to censor the cartoons and journalists are alos frequently paid to write favourably about certain issues.
Donors should encourage journalists to write more on awareness issues and the work of NGOs in Swahili newspaper. Tanzania Media Women Association and (TAMWA) and Tanzania Union of Journalists (TUJ) are possible partners in this work. The advocacy organizations should also be encouraged to distribute their newsletters to rural areas where there is a profound lack of reading materials. One such newsletter, “Sauti ya Demokrasia” (The voice of democracy), is said to be very popular in the targeted areas.
There are 12 registered radio stations in the country, of which only Radio Tanzania is national and run by the government. Radio Tanzania has traditionally been used for educating the people on various issues, often in the form of Swahili radio drama, US Aid has for several years sponsored a popular radio dram series that focuses on family planning and HIV. Radio drama could also be used for the type of awareness that we propose here. There are several theatre groups that have experience with this and who can make very entertaining plays that at the same time gets a message through.
Example are Muungano Cultural Troupe (used by US Aid) And Mandela Theatre Group. According to an evaluation of Kenyan radio plays on environmental issues, the reception and change of actual conduct was surprisingly high.
While Radio Tanzania would be good for reaching rural audiences, the privately owned Radio One might be an alternative to target the Dar es Salaam audience, as much more people seem to be attuned to this station. Concerning the up-country radio stations, they are all run by churches, except two commercial stations in Arusha and one in Mwanza.
There are seven television broadcasting companies in the country, all established from 1994 and onwards. The last station to be launched was the National Television which became operational only in 1999. Five of the stations are based in Dar es Salaam, the two others are in Morogoro. In addition, there are 19 cable television networks, all but one of them based in the northern part of the country.
The television business is dominated by people from the Asian minority, and a large part of the programmes are imported from Western companies. All the major station features news in Swahili however, and several of them produce debate programmes on current issues (eg. Kiti moto on DTV). Swahili drama/”soap operaes” are also very popular, and some of them attempt to play a didactic role on issues like health and social relations. As with radio plays, the Swahili soap operaes and debate programmes could be used in awareness progrmmes.
During one-party rule, the CCM party sought to monopolise the cultural field. People were encouraged to form cultural troupes to propagate the ujamaa policies. Such groups were common in all villages, at work places and in schools. The troupes performed traditional dances, commonly accompanied by political songs, as well as theatre skits.22
Much can be said about the propagandistic aspect of this, but more important to us now is take into consideration the potential that lies within this cultural form. In the height of ujamaa, people enthusiastically composed songs to spread party policies. If we could mobilize the same spirit for the achieved a lot. The point here is to use local groups as much as possible, rather than sending urban troupes on tour (as was done with the SIDA sponsored Aids campaign). Other forms of popular culture, like Dance Bands and Swahili Rap, could also be involved in this work.
Building Civil Society From Below-The Educations System
The initiatives suggested above mainly target adult people. If civil society is to develop from below however, there may be a need to get people interested in association life from an early age. A place to start would be the educational system. During the colonial era and few years after, association like the Red Cross and the Scouts movement were common in schools all over the country, and thus contributed to an associational culture beyond the urban areas. Children and youth were then accustomed to community work on a voluntary basis.
There is little or no such forms of associational life in schools today. A promising start, however, is that some of the private primary schools in Dar es Salaam involve the pupils in a move to collect used toys and clothes for street children. This is a way of mobilizing children to think beyond their individual needs, and to create a culture of helping others-not only relatives, but also people whom one not have a personal relation to. The teachers in public schools on the other hand, are underpaid and do not seem to be motivated for such activities.
A possible way to involve teachers in awareness programmes would to go through the Teachers Union. A major obstacle for the successful implementation of such programmes however, is the character of the pupil-teacher relationship in Tanzania-typically based on hierarchy and strict discipline. For this reason, it would probably be easier to try out the programme in secondary school and then to go on to primary schools if the results seemed positive.
Above all, in Tanzania it have been established what known as civil society foundation:
What is the foundation for civil society?
The foundation for civil society is a Tanzania non-profit company, designed and funded by a group of like-minded development partners, and governed by an independent Board. It was previously known as the Civil Society Program (CSP). The Foundation was registered in September 2002 and started operations in January 2003.
The foundation have a vision of becoming sustainable model of excellence that contributes to the development of a vibrant, effective and innovative civil society sector that enables citizens to engage in the democratic process, promote human rights and contribute to poverty reduction and a better quality of life for all Tanzania, and the mission of providing grants and other capacity building support to civil society organizations to enable economically disadvantaged and vulnerable citizens to:
· Access information and understand policies, laws and their rights
· Engage effectively in policy formulation and monitoring on poverty reduction
· Contribute to social development and to constructively hold the government and private sectors to account
The foundation aims to establish an intermediary support mechanism for civil society organizations in Tanzania which will enable effective engagement in poverty reduction efforts as set out in the Government of Tanzania policies: Vision 2025, the Tanzania Assistance Strategy, an the National Strategy for Growth and Reduction of Poverty (NSGRP).
The foundation is one of the largest support mechanisms support mechanism for civil society in Tanzania, and is committed to delivering grant aid and supporting capacity-building initiatives as a means of strengthening effective engagement in poverty reduction. What is the Structure of the Foundation? The foundation for Civil Society is operated by Secretariat and governed by a independent Board and the Council Members.
The secretariat which is located in Dar es Salaam, is responsible for day-to-day activities of the foundation. It is made of three department; Grants Department, Development Department and Administration and Finance Department.
Grants department is primary responsible on issues regarding grants. It is responsible or grants information dissemination through information sessions, grants application processing and contract management of the projects. The department is implementing these through activities through site visits, information sessions in the regions and through reports analysis.
It has the overall responsibility of developing and monitoring the foundation’s policies and procedures. It is a resources centre for the organization. Specifically the department’s role is to make sure that the intended outputs and impacts of the foundation’s services are realized effectively through impact assessments and grantees auditing, information gathering and dissemination, enhancing partnership and networks, conducting participatory research on CSOs and capacity development for CSOs and public engagement through public policy dialogues.
Administration and Finance Department
The administration and finance department is responsible to ensure that the organizational development is providing quality services by managing recurrent expenses and maximizing value for money within the allocated budget. It has the responsibility to prepare financial reports and ensure source of funds. The administration and finance department is also charged with the role of updating human resources systems and developing staff related policies.
SUGGESTIONS AND CONCLUSION
Though NGOs are doing well, but there is a need for government support to NGOs to enable them to perform better and contribute to development.
The government and civil societies have to increase transparency or in other words promote good governance practical as far as they are their for people or community.
Some members of the Foundation for civil society suggested that a lot of funds are provided by donors but not the whole amount do what was intended to fund; because some executives ask for ten percent (corruption)
In order for the civil society to be strong and contribute more to the Development of this nation, there must be pre set codes of conduct and an institution which will be given the responsibility to control the rules and the civil society; as it was observed that there is no institution which govern and make follow on these NGOs, CBOs and other on how they abide to the rules and regulations.
The code of conduct should also be practiced by with the donors. Many donors impose their own objectives on civil society organizations rather than engaging with civil society organizations themselves on what should be the goals and priorities for their activities.
Finally, we should consider the potential of the business community as contributors to development projects. Major companies in Tanzania seem more than willing to sponsor beauty contests and sports. They see higher commercial effects in these activities than in the NGO sector. Perhaps the NGOs themselves have been to passive when it comes to approaching business sponsors. The DogoDogo Centre (for street children) however, has had successful collaboration with Sheraton Hotel (currently known as moven peak). Former street children were given work at the hotel and where thus enabled to live a decent life independent of external donors.
Although the NGOs should be encouraged to link up with the private sector for the development of the national, the real challenge is to get the masses involved. We have seen in the above example that reciprocity and closeness is vital for people to identify with a given project. If one wants to develop and apply this mode of thought to bigger communities and development projects, one would need a programme to create increased awareness about the following issues:
· Social services, with some exception, are no longer to be provided by the state.
· Private initiatives by individuals or groups are welcome and necessary in the new political system.
· Civil servants are there to serve to citizens and people have the right to demand something from them.
For these organizations become more successful, the donors have to fund what has been suggested by the community and not what the donors prefers.
The government has to build the capacity of its people in this industry so what they will be able to participate effectively. This will lead to a core set the skills, knowledge and approaches that will lay the foundation for a vocal and conscious civil society sector.
Conclusively, civil societies are development partners, and not political oppositions though in some circumstances they give their views about some policies and decisions made by the political parties (ruling one).
1. The National Poverty Eradicating Strategy 1998, Tanzania
2. Samji Waheed Shariff and Albee Alama (2000) selected studies of civil society in
Tanzania DFID, Tanzania.
3. TANGO,(2002), Organizational Development Manual,Color print (T) Ltd, Dar es salaam, Tanzania
SOUTHERN NEW HAMPHIRE UNIVERSITY
AND OPEN UNIVERSITY OF TANZANIA COMMUNITY ECONOMY DEVELOPMENT PROGRAME.
STUDENT NAME: MKWAZU CHANGWA M.
PROGRAMME: MASTER DEGREE IN COMMUNITY ECONOMIC
COURSE TITLE: PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES OF
CODE: ICD 533
TOPIC: CIVIL SOCIETY AND NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATION IN
TANZANIA ARE DEVELOPMENT PARTINERS AND NOT OPPOSITION
INSTRUCTION NAME: DR. SINDA
CENTRE: DAR ES SALAAM.