Data and privacy are especially important in the context of the anti-gay clampdown in Tanzania. Currently, the digital world and the governments of most countries are setting up measures to ensure data is protected while most African countries are still at the stage that views the internet as a revolutionary weapon. In relation to gender as well, there are policies yet to be implemented, policies not yet brought to the table for discussion and the in-between of policies that are not inclusive or efficient.
Recently a prominent governor of the business capital of Tanzania, Dar es Salaam, came on media to publicly announce a 17-person strong surveillance team to track gay people. About potentially facing international criticism, he said, "I prefer to anger those countries than to anger God." The governor also recently called out a celebrity, Amba Rutty, who was brought to court, failed to meet bond and is still in custody.
Gay communities are in fear since this public announcement of surveillance of all the residents in Dar es Salaam in the name of "cleaning up the city". The governor emphasised that the task force created was going to be able to identify phones that have sexual contents and social media groups or texts that were promoting gay "behavior or prostitution". Following the release of this information, the governor has reported on his social media account that he received over 5,000 messages with the names of over 100 gays. Homosexuality in Tanzania is illegal according to the outdated laws that the country adopted during colonialism.
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