Bridging Divided Identities – or an Agency of Political Domination? Reassessing the Future of the Tanzanian Union KJETIL TRONVOLL* 1. Introduction Tanzania is often portrayed as an African success story of state and nation-building, surrounded by neighbouring countries which have been ridden by conflicts and grave human rights violations during the post-colonial period. The successive Tanzanian governments have, by most observers, been characterised as fairly benign and accountable, although the radical ujamaa policy has in retrospect been increasingly criticised. 1 Despite this weakness of an indigenous brand of African socialism, the ‘father of the nation’, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, has left a legacy of political toler- ance and nationhood on line with few other African independence leaders. This is in particular noteworthy considering the fact that Tanzania is a political Union, estab- lished in 1964 by the two independent, sovereign states of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The success of the Tanzanian polity is partly based on developing and formulating a national political discourse, where ethnic or parochial sentiments have been muted. This legacy of Nyerere has seemingly forged a vibrant and all-embracing Tanzanian identity. Or, this is how it was perceived until the fall of the single-party doctrine in the
International Journal on Minority and Group Rights – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2006
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