Tanzania’s president, John Magufuli has said that people charged of tax evasion, money laundering and other financial crimes, who are ready to apologise and confess their wrongdoings should sit down with the DPP (Director of Public Prosecutions) in the country and work out a payment plan for the taxes they have evaded or the money that they have laundered and then they can be released from detention.
Speaking during a swearing-in ceremony for new government officials on Sunday at the State House in Dar es Salaam, Magfuli said he does not want to be seen as interfering in the judicial process and that his statement was only a recommendation, adding that it is not immediately clear what impact his words would have on a number of recent detentions of business executives and other important figures including the journalist, Erick Kabendera.
The President noted that there are some suspects that have been held in detention for three years now, adding that the move would help ease crowding in prisons and raise money for governance.
The detention of freelance journalist, Kabendera has been generating reactions, as the Committee to Protect Journalists and other rights groups have shown concern for the journalist who was detained in July, 2019 on charges of failure to pay tax and money laundering.
At least three other Tanzanian executives were also charged last year with money laundering and other crimes and are in detention. They have since denied any wrongdoing.