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Free food distributed at drama practice

There is a parent who distributed food in good faith at a drama practice for kids. All those who ate fell seriously sick with food poisoning. Can this be an offence considering that it was in good faith and distributed for free? Please revert as some parents are threatening this poor parent. NF, Dar

It doesn’t matter if the food was for free and at a drama practice. An offence is still committed as long as the foot was unfit for human consumption. Under section 32 of the Tanzania Food, Drugs and Cosmetics Act any person who (a) distributes, sells, or offers or has in his possession for the purpose of distribution, sale or manufacture for sale or (b) deposits with, or consigns to, any person for the purpose of distribution or sale or manufacture for distribution or sale, any food intended, but unfit, for human consumption, shall be guilty of an offence. Further, where any food in respect of which an offence under paragraph (a) above has been committed, if the unfit food or food products was distributed or sold to the offender by some other person, that other person, shall also be guilty of an offence. The above provision applies in relation to any food intended for human consumption which is offered as a prize or reward or donation in connection with any entertainment to which the public are admitted, whether or not on payment of money, as if such food were or had been, exposed for sale by each person in the organization of the entertainment. This law is intentionally very strict as it involves human lives.

Sonara cheating in grammage

I have been buying gold ornaments for years from a particular goldsmith (sonara) in Dar who has always been giving me great discounts. Three months ago, I went and bought two sets of earrings. After I left the sonara, I was unsure of the grammage of the earrings and I went back to get each of the earrings labelled with their actual weight. Fortunately or unfortunately I went into the neighbouring sonara shop believing it to be the one I had just come out of. Luckily the person there was very cooperative and agreed to measure the earrings for me. To my dismay the grammage was much less than what the sellers scale showed me meaning that his scale is deliberately calibrated to show more grammage and cheat customers. I think I have been cheated by this sonara for the past ten years. Is there no law that regulates the weighing scales that such sonaras use? OP, Dar

There is a specific Act- the Weights and Measures Act that protects you. Infact such scales are to be regularly inspected and you have all the rights to report this to the Weights and Measures Agency (WMA) who will take appropriate action. The WMA can both fine and imprison such a sonara. You also have the right to report this to the police for investigation as this is a cause of concern for all purchasers of gold from such sonaras. Such a behavior amounts to a criminal offence which is imprisonable.

3 big players fixing prices

There is a certain manufacturing industry where it is clear that the three big players are fixing prices. How can this be addressed? AL, Dar

The Fair Competition Act, 2003 provides that, a person shall not make or give effect to an agreement if the object, effect or likely effect of the agreement is price fixing between competitors. Price fixing between competitors means to fix, restrict or control the prices, tariffs, surcharges or other charges for, or the terms or conditions upon which, a party to an agreement supplies or acquires, or offers to supply or acquire, goods or services, in competition with any other party to the agreement. Any person who intentionally or negligently acts in contravention of the provisions of this section, commits an offence.

The Act provides for massive fines for such behavior.

Declaration of properties by leaders

Are public leaders forced to declare their properties? Is there any law which requires them to do so? RK, Iringa

The ethics of public leaders in Tanzania is guided by the Public Leadership Code of Ethics Act. This is the law which guides and directs as to the ethics of all public leaders in Tanzania. The code of ethics requires public leaders to declare their assets in written form to the ethics commissioner.

Such declaration has to be submitted to the ethics commissioner within thirty days after being appointed, at the end of each year and at the end of such leader’s term in office.

A public leader is supposed to declare all assets owned by him, his spouse and unmarried minor children. Further to that a public leader is not allowed in the course of his official duties to acquire any significant pecuniary advantage or assist in the acquisition of pecuniary advantage to another person, by improperly using or benefiting from information which is obtained in the course of his official duties and which is not generally available in the public.

The ethics secretariat which is established under article 132 of the constitution of the United Republic of Tanzania has the duty, among others, to inquire into any alleged or suspected breach of the code by public leaders. Any breach may result in a fine, imprisonment or both.

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Author: FB Attorneys

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