Tanzania has a rich Islamic history. Made up of the union of Tanganyika and Zanzibar—hence the name Tanzania—it has still not shaken off the colonial legacy after more than 50 years of independence.
At the University of Dar es Salam (Tanzania), the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies took a bold step in organizing a seminar under the theme, ‘Religion and Universal Human Values.’ Held on May 6 in the Nakrumah Conference Hall at the sprawling campus, there were three Christian and four Muslim speakers. The Christian speakers were from the Department of Philosophy while the Muslim speakers included two local ulama, a youth leader and ICIT Director Zafar Bangash. Nearly 500 people—mostly students from the university attended the one-day conference.
Now that the dust has settled after the death and state burial of Julius Kambarage Nyerere, ex-President of the Republic of Tanzania, it is time for some of the inconsistencies and paradoxes of the most Islamophobic leader in post-colonial Africa to be discussed and put into context.
The US is presently engaged in an intensive witch-hunt against Islamic movement activists all over the world, on the grounds that they are part of an ‘international terror network’ controlled by Osama bin Ladin and responsible for the bombings of the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania, and numerous other ‘terrorist acts’ against US installations and interests around the world.