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Explore the Beauty of Tanzania

The United Republic of Tanzania is one of the most peaceful countries in Africa. The country is located on the Indian Ocean in the east of the African continent and borders the countries of Burundi, Kenya, Congo, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda and Uganda. Tanzania declared its independence from the United Kingdom on December 9, 1961 and is now a member of the East African Community (EAC). The capital is Dodoma, with the seat of government in Dar es Salaam, the largest city in the country. The official language is Swahili.

Further information can be found on the governmental website of the United Kingdom.

Map of Tanzania


Data & Facts

Capital City



Tanzanian shilling


945.203 km²


John Magufuli



Time zone

UTC +3

Calling code


National language


History and politics of Tanzania

After independence, Julius Nyerere was elected as the first president. In the early days of independence, most high-level positions in government were not held by Africans, and the state relied heavily on Britain for development aid. In January 1962, Nyerere resigned and Rashidi Kawawa became prime minister. During this time, Tanzania began to actively distance itself from its former British colonial masters. The political system changed from British-inspired parliamentarianism to a presidential system of government. Regional and district commissioners (mainly from TANU, Tanganyika African National Union) were appointed, replacing their British predecessors. By the end of 1962, the country had also adopted a new constitution. Julius Nyerere returned to politics and overwhelmingly defeated Mtemvu of the African National Congress in free elections. In 1964, Tanganyika and Zanzibar merged to form present-day Tanzania. Even today, Julius Nyerere (13.4.1922 - 14.10.1999) is honoured with honorary titles and nicknames such as baba ya taifu (father of the nation) and mwalimu (teacher) and is held in the highest esteem by the population, especially because of his personal integrity, pronounced modesty and lack of corruption.

Julius Kambarage Nyerere followed a socialist political philosophy called "ujamaa". This policy emphasised the country's need to be economically independent rather than hoping for foreign aid and investment. In the early 1970s, a programme of "villageisation" began, with the aim of organising rural life into village communities. Initially voluntary, the process met with increasing resistance. In 1975, Nyerere introduced forced "villageisation". Almost 80 percent of the population was organised into 7,700 villages. In 1971, banks, plantations and land were nationalised. In January 1977, he merged TANU and Zanzibar's Afro Shirazi Party to form a new national unity party - the Chama Cha Mapinduzi (CCM, Revolutionary State Party), which has remained in power uninterrupted to this day. Despite well-intentioned state planning, agricultural production declined in the 1970s, and with falling world market prices for commodities (especially coffee and sisal), meagre export earnings diminished in the 1980s. Tanzania became the largest per capita recipient of foreign aid in Africa.

Tanzania became the largest per capita recipient of foreign aid in Africa. At the time of his resignation in 1985, Tanzania was one of the poorest countries in the world. Agriculture had been reduced to subsistence level, infrastructure and industry had been decimated. At least one third of the national budget was provided by development aid.

On the positive side, Nyerere conducted mass literacy campaigns and offered free universal education. Tanzania has one of the highest literacy rates in Africa to this day because of this policy. The verdorfung was very successful in fighting tribalism and led to a stable political situation that was unique, especially in the region. A real achievement with well over 100 different tribes and ethnic groups with different languages, ways of life and traditions. Except for the Uganda-Tanzania War (Kagera War, 1978-1979), which led to the removal of the feared and cruel dictator Idi Amin in Uganda, Tanzania, unlike its neighbouring countries, can look back on many peaceful and stable decades without ethnic conflicts.


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