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UA 421/94 - Tanzania: executions / fear of further executions: Hamadi Kamfitiye, Kisage Kamfitiye, Elias Mwaluko, Juma Athman, Lazaro Lukilangarom, Iddi Koch Sasha, Colonel Dominic Nshimanyi

, N° d'index: AFR 56/002/1994

The seven men and one woman named above were reportedly hanged in secret in Dodoma on 24 October 1994. Other secret executions were reportedly carried out on the same date in prisons at Tabora and Mwanza. The executions come at a time when the Tanzanian Court of Appeal is to rule on the constitutionality of the death penalty.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AFR 56/02/94
Distr: UA/SC
UA 421/94 Executions / Fear of further executions 30 November 1994
TANZANIA Hamadi Kamfitiye
Kisage Kamfitiye
Elias Mwaluko
Juma Athman
Lazaro Lukilangaro
Iddi Koch Sasha
Colonel Dominic Nshimanyi
Zazi Matayo (f)
Amnesty International fears that the Tanzanian authorities may have have an
extensive program of executions planned for the near future following reports
that the seven men and one woman named above were hanged in secret in Dodoma
on 24 October 1994. The organization is deeply concerned at unconfirmed reports
that other secret executions were carried out on or around the same date at
prisons in Tabora and Mwanza.
The executions come at a time when a ruling by the Tanzanian Court of Appeal
is awaited as to whether the death penalty violates the Constitution. In June
1994, Justice James L Mwalusanya ruled in the High Court of Tanzania at Dodoma
that the death penalty violated the Constitution on the grounds that it
constituted cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment. In September, the
Attorney-General lodged an appeal against Mr Justice Mwalusanya's ruling in
the Tanzanian Court of Appeal.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
It is believed that many of the prisoners named above have been on death row
for a long period. For example, Juma Athman and Colonel Dominic Nshimanyi were
sentenced to death for murder by the High Court in Tabora in January and March
1989 respectively.
The last executions of which Amnesty International is aware in Tanzania took
place in 1991, when three prisoners were executed, although these too were
never officially announced. Since then, there have been persistent but
unconfirmed reports that executions were continuing to take place secretly.
The news of the hanging of the above eight prisoners heightens fears that this
may indeed have been the case.
The Penal Code provides for the death penalty for treason and murder; for the
latter offence it is mandatory. If convicted and sentenced to death, prisoners
have the right of appeal to the Court of Appeal, and to petition the President
for clemency if that appeal fails. Pregnant women and anyone under the age
of 18 at the time of the commission of the alleged capital offence may not
be sentenced to death.
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telexes/telegrams/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in English or in your own language:
- expressing concern at the secret execution of the eight prisoners (naming
them) in Dodoma on 24 October 1994;
- calling for an immediate suspension of all executions;
- explaining that Amnesty International considers that the death penalty is
the ultimate form of cruel, inhuman and degrading punishment as prohibited
by Article 5 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other international
2
human rights standards;
- urging the Tanzanian government to commit itself to abolition of the death
penalty, irrespective of the final ruling in the Tanzanian Court of Appeal
as to the constitutionality of the death penalty;
- calling for the authorities to publish full details of all executions which
have been carried out in Tanzania since 1985.
APPEALS TO:
1) President Ali Hassan Mwinyi
Office of the President
State House
PO Box 9120
Dar es Salaam
Tanzania
Telegrams: President Mwinyi, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Telexes: 41192
Faxes: +255 51 46913
Salutation: Your Excellency
COPIES TO:
The Hon. Ndugu Joseph Rwegasira
Minister of Foreign Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
PO Box 9000
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
The Hon. Ndugu Augustine Mrema
Minister of Home Affairs
Ministry of Home Affairs
PO Box 9223
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Chief Justice
The Hon. Ndugu Francis Nyalali
PO Box 9004
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
and to diplomatic representatives of Tanzania accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 7 January 1995.

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