CSOs key in ensuring rule of law, justice: government

Thursday October 28 2021
CSO pic

Mr Enock Nyanda. PHOTO | CORRESPONDENT

By The Citizen Reporter

Dodoma. Civil society organisations (CSOs) are playing an important role in contributing to development at the individual and national levels through justice and the rule of law, the government has said.

The acting director of policy coordination in the Office of the President, Regional Administration and Local Government (PO-RALG), Mr Enock Nyanda, made the observation in Dodoma during a panel discussion organised by the Legal Services Facility Tanzania (LSF) as part of CSO Week 2021.

He said joint efforts by the government and CSOs were needed to sensitise the public on the importance of observing the rule of law in the provision of social services at all levels.

“One of the overriding responsibilities of PO-RALG is to ensure that the rule of law is observed in Tanzania. This includes supervision of the collection of revenue and its expenditure by local authorities and overseeing security at the level of local governments, which are a key pillar in efforts to improve and facilitate the delivery of social services level,” Mr Nyanda said.

He added that PO-RALG is also responsible for coordinating civil society activities with a view to facilitating CSOs’ role of assisting the government to address various challenges in the delivery of social services.

The executive secretary of the National Economic empowerment Council (NEEC), Ms Beng’i Issa, said there are many areas in which the government has facilitated the economic growth of youth, including provision of entrepreneurship knowledge meant to help them employ themselves.

Advertisement

“We have put in place guidelines on the teaching of entrepreneurship from primary school to university level. This is part of the government’s efforts to make it possible for youth to use their education to employ themselves,” she said.

Speaking in a special interview after the panel discussion, LSF executive director Lulu Ng’wanakilala said the organisation has so far provided legal assistance to at least 6 million people who have been reached directly in all regions across Tanzania Mainland and Zanzibar.

She added that legal services provided under the organisation’s tutelage had a 73 percent success rate, with most of the legal matters they handle being resolved before reaching higher levels of the judicial process.

“Most of the cases referred to us are resolved before they reach higher organs, and this is a significant achievement that benefits even the government as it plays a very important role in reducing backlogs of cases in the courts. The biggest beneficiaries are ordinary Tanzanians who are unable to pay for legal services,” Ms Ng’wanakilala said.

CSO Week 2021 winds up in Dodoma today with the presentation of awards to CSOs that excelled in various areas over the past year.

The Minister of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children, Dr Dorothy Gwajima, is expected to be the chief guest at the CSO Excellence Awards at Royal Village Hotel where CSOs will be honoured for their role in promoting gender equality, accountability and the welfare of people living with disabilities, among others.

CSO Week 2021, whose theme is “Civil Society and Development”, kicked off in a colourful ceremony last Saturday with a two-day exhibition at the Jakaya Kikwete Convention Centre (JKCC). The chief guest on the opening day was National Assembly speaker Job Ndugai.

On Sunday there were also discussions on how CSOs are working with the government to facilitate and expedite socioeconomic development in the country. Conference sessions began on Monday at Royal Village Hotel, and are scheduled to end today.

The CSO Week 2021 exhibition drew thousands of visitors, who had an opportunity to visit numerous pavilions at JKCC.

Several themes were discussed at the conference sessions, which involved ministers, senior government officials, members of Parliament and civil society stakeholders.