May 28, 2006

Zanzibaris challenge Tanzania Union in court

A group of Zanzibaris have gone to court to challenge the 1964 union that created modern Tanzania, saying there is no document to prove the merger. Tanganyika, led by the late Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, and Zanzibar under the late Abeid Amani Karume, merged in 1964 to form the United Republic of Tanzania.

Ten residents of semi-autonomous Zanzibar, led by Rashid Salum Adiy, have sued in the Zanzibar High Court to have the union declared illegal after Zanzibar's government failed to produce the original document that Karume and Nyerere signed. "The Attorney General has been unable to explain clearly and according to the law ... why his office did not keep records of the original document of the Articles of the Union," their petition says. The government declined to comment. The Zanzibar High Court has set further hearings for June 28. (The Standard, Nairobi)

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