Dar es Salaam. The Tanganyika Law Society (TLS) has lost more than 10 of its members in the past two months, a number that has not happened since the formation of the body.
The deaths of the lawyers who died between December 2020 and January 2021 from various ailments including two who died on Friday and Saturday in Morogoro region, has shaken the community.
Although the lawyers themselves through their groups on social networks including Whatsapp have been expressing their feelings about the cause of their deaths, there is no official report of the deaths of their colleagues.
According to a list obtained by this newspaper in collaboration with the TLS leadership, two lawyers from Morogoro region, Alex Sikalumba and Allen Mwakyoma died on Friday and Saturday.
Others are Angel Korosso who died on January 28, Edson Mkisi who died on January 26, Lord Munuo Ng’uni who died on January 25, Professor Nicholaus Nditi who died on January 27, Tumaini Pius who died on January 21 and Hashim Ngole on January 9.
The regions rocked by the deaths of lawyers who are members of TLS are Kilimanjaro, Dar es Salaam, Tabora, Dodoma, Morogoro and on the list of deceased lawyers there is also Aneth Lwiza.
Moshi lawyer David Shillatu said the number of deaths among the learned friends was alarming and had not happened since Tanzania gained its independence in 1961.
"It's a bit scary and I can honestly say it has never happened even though the lawyers' community today is a big group, but this is the highest number of deaths that we have recorded in a row since independence," said Shillatu.
Another lawyer, Patrick Paul, said the deaths of his colleagues worries them but in the nature of their work they meet many people and handle documents that go through hands of many people.
"I can't say he died of this disease or that but with the nature of our work we meet a lot of people and keep a lot of documents, you can't tell who has an infectious disease or not," he said.
Patrick said that together with them making sure they take health precautions, but also most lawyers do not exercise and that leads to getting diseases like diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure.
Speaking to this newspaper about the deaths, TLS President, Dr Rugemeleza Nshala said more than 10 members died within two months while last week alone, the party lost four members.
Dr Nshala said the members died of various causes such as the ‘current pneumonia’ and other non-communicable diseases such as diabetes, kidney and high blood pressure.
"It is a huge gap in the legal fraternity for many members to die. We are going through a difficult time. Last week we lost Professor Mbiti and a week before we lost Professor (Joseph) Kanywanyi, ”he said.