Tanzania has banned the publication of The Citizen newspaper for seven days, effective today.
This follows a story it published on depreciation of the shilling against the dollar on February 23, which the government terms as false.
“(The Citizen) deliberately published misleading information that the value of the Tanzanian shilling has declined compared to three years ago without following the due procedure and financial standards set by the Bank of Tanzania ,” said the registrar of newspapers, Mr Patrick Kipangula.
Mr Kipangula also accused the Mwananchi-owned paper of “largely violating media ethics and inciting citizens against the government.”
Their website has already been pulled down in compliance with the government order.
The government was also not happy with the paper’s story on July, 22, 2018 titled “US Senator Raises Alarm on Tanzania” in which it quoted Senator Bob Menendez of New Jersey detailing Tanzania’s democratic situation.
Mwananchi Group Executive Editor, Mr Bakari Machumu, said they have received with shock the suspension but will abide by the decision of the government.
“We have received the decision of the government with shock but as a company we believe in working in accordance to the law, we will thus comply,” said Mr Machumu.
The government of Tanzania under President John Pombe magufuli has been facing criticism for stifling the freedom of the media, while professing otherwise to the outside world.