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Police Forces and the Administration of Justice in Tanzania.

Police Forces and the Administration of Justice in Tanzania.

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Published by Praygod Manase

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Published by: Praygod Manase on Dec 21, 2011
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01/11/2014

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Police Forces and the Administration of Justice in Tanzania.
By Praygod Manase.
Tanzania achieved her independence in 1961from the British after the long struggles of ourforefathers against the cruel and inhumanadministration which was administered by thecolonialists. The colonial administration wascharacterized by use of brutal force,segregation, degradation, alienation of properties from Africa and other inhuman acts.After gaining independence Tanzanians wereeager to have their own system of administration which would cater for theirneeds and respect them as people and givethem the joy and happiness they had alwayswanted. However it is questionable if afteralmost 50 years of independence the system of government meets those expectations. Thistakes us back to the basic proposition that theAfrican state and economy are a continuationof the colonial state and economy and as suchcan deliver neither political democracy norsocial democracy which is a very seriousindictment that cannot be made, withoutproffering at least credible evidence.
i
 The police forces who are vested with powersof protecting and safeguarding the
citizens’
 interests are one of the organs
 
which have avery critical position in this country in theadministration of justice. However it isquestionable whether they understand theirposition.
 
This paper basically analyses thepolice forces and administrative justice. Doesthe government in executing its policies andprograms, really care for its citizens or actsupon its wishes only? Do the police haverelevant knowledge of the law and theprinciples they have to abide by in their work?What is the cause of claims directed towardspolice forces? All these and many morequestions need a critical analysis.
A
DMINISTRATIVE
J
USTICE
.
The concept of administrative justice is such
that, the impact which a government’s
administrative decision can have on the rightsor interests of a person that is a keydeterminant of the expectation thatadministrative justice should be observed. Inthat sense, at its core, administrative justice isa philosophy that in administrative decision-making the rights and interests of individualsshould be properly safeguarded.
ii
Further, abroader definition would mean the applicationin a particular context of the essentials of lawful, fair and rational behavior that citizensand corporations or other corporate entitiesare entitled to expect of all decision-makers,whether they be judges or public officials.While their trappings, mechanisms and legaleffects may differ, the extent to which thosecore elements are maintained will continue tobe a measure of the rule of law in our society.Their maintenance apposes practical challengesfor all who are concerned about publicadministration.Administrative justice can be divided into twofields; the first sets standards for the quality of decisions that are made, and the second setsprocedural standards for the way in which such
 
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©Praygod Manase, Makumira university college llb2ipmanase@ymail.com.
decisions are executed. Whereby, a breach of any of the aforementioned categories leads toadministrative injustice which directly amountsto a breach of the most fundamental rights of human beings, which define relationshipsbetween individuals and power structures
especially the State, “Human rights”.
iii
Humanrights delimit State power and, at the sametime, require States to take positive measuresensuring an environment that enables allpeople to enjoy their human rights
.
iv 
 
TheTanzanian courts have to a great extent dealtwith the first part i.e. the manner and qualitythe government in regard to its statutes andpolicies and has set a number of legislations asbeing null and void by reason of being amongothers unconstitutional, unjust and againsthuman rights .
 
In this regard, the major areaof concern will be the execution of thegovernmental decisions and orders assumingthat all the governmental orders, policies andlegislations are just and fair as a result of beinginto permanent judicial scrutiny.
This papers’
major concern will be based on the executersof the orders especially the police forces.
T
HE
P
OLICE
F
ORCES
.
The police force is one of the most noticeableexecuter of government policies and orders. Itis also one of the government institutions whichwork so close to the citizens and society aswhole. The police in performing their dutiesare vested with immense powers which must becontrolled to prevent their misuse. Alsocontrolling the police itself is a source of tremendous powers that can be misused toserve partisan interests.
v
 However police, like any other corporateorganization and any ordinary citizen, is aboveall accountable to the law. Armed with themighty of the State and empowered to useforce against ordinary citizens, the police in itsspecial role of performing a service for the
good of citizens with the citizen’s money is
answerable not only for its wrongdoings butalso for its performance.
vi
 In practical terms, it is the duty of the policewithin the context of maintaining law andorder to prevent the commission of offences, toapprehend those believed to be committing orabout to commit or to have committedoffences and bring them to justice. The corefunctions of the Police Force in Tanzania arestated under section 5 of the Police Force andAuxiliary Services Act Cap 322 as follows:
…The Force shall be employed in and 
throughout the United Republic for the preservation of peace, the maintenance of law and order, the prevention and detection of crime, the apprehension and guarding of offenders and the protection
of property…
 
G
UIDING
P
RINCIPLES
;
As noted earlier the police in performing theirfunctions are endowed with much power, whichif not controlled effectively it can be abusedand occur injustice and breach of human rights.In many African countries, the Police Acts vestthe control in the head of the police force, butsubject it to the directions given by thePresident or the Minister, which are binding
vii
.
 
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©Praygod Manase, Makumira university college llb2ipmanase@ymail.com.
The Tanzanian police force is guided by amongothers the constitution of the united republicof Tanzania, the criminal procedure act, thepolice force and auxiliary services act, thepolice force services regulation 1995 and thepolice general orders. Of importance to thispaper is the constitution, the CriminalProcedures Act.
T
HE CONSTITUTION
.
The police forces in Tanzania are not muchguided by the constitution. The only explicitprovision guiding them is Article 13(6)(b) whichholds that no person charged with a criminaloffence shall be treated as guilty until it hasbeen proven so. It does not tell us the realposition of the police forces, albeit it hasexplained generally a lot about the armedforces. Further the constitution does not relatethe ideals of human rights and administrativejustice into the police mandate despite thepresence of the bill of human rightsincorporated. Nor does the constitution of theunited republic of Tanzania require the policeto be responsive, representative oraccountable.
viii
 The constitution is based on ideas of collectivesecurity, i.e. citizens self defense as providedfor under article 27(1), which requires all ablebodied Tanzanians to prevent crimes andmaintain peace and security.Article 9 of the constitution incorporates theUnited Nations declaration for human rightsand requires the government bodies to complywith the declaration. Further article 9(h) callsfor all the government bodies to eradicate allforms of injustice discrimination, oppressionand favoritism. These principles provide a goodbase for the public authorities to work fromhowever article 30 states that any rights andfreedoms enshrined in the constitution do notinvalidate any existing public order or publicsafety legislation.Whilst the freedom of assembly and association
are guaranteed by Tanzania’s constitution and
its adherence to international human rightsinstruments, in practice the police forces ofteninterfere with peaceful gatherings of a religiousand political kind. Particularly worrying, from
the perspective of Tanzania’s democratic
development, are reports that opposition partyrallies during election campaigns aresometimes interfered with or banned. Religiousgatherings are also targeted, with evidencethat the government has singled out Muslimgroups in particular. The question about theguarantee of the freedom of association inTanzania is of fundamental importance.
ix
 
T
HE CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
A
CT
.
Never the less, under the Criminal procedureAct and the police forces Act, once a person isarrested they must be kept in an authorizedplace, informed of the reasons for their arrestand their right to a lawyer and to be taken tocourt as soon as possible. Arrests can be madewith or without warrants. Also s. 32(1) of theCPA requires the police officer to produce thearrested before the court in 24 hours. Further,The Criminal Procedure Act in Section 21(1)provides to the effect that in making an arrestof an individual, the police officer shall not usemore force than necessary to make the arrest

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