Tanzania’s President John Magufuli sacked the country’s information minister on Thursday, the first cabinet change since taking office in late 2015.
Magufuli, nicknamed “the Bulldozer” for his strict leadership style, launched a reform drive soon after he was elected by dismissing dozens of senior public officials over allegations of corruption and inefficiency.
The president removed Nape Nnauye as the country’s Minister of Information, Culture, Arts and Sports just days after the minister ordered a probe into an alleged raid on a private television station by a senior government official on March 17.
Harrison Mwakyembe was appointed information minister while Palamagamba Kabudi was named justice and constitutional affairs minister, the portfolio previously held by Mwakyembe.
No reason was given for the cabinet changes, but some analysts said there were reports of friction among some government officials over Magufuli’s strict leadership style.
On Thursday, police officers prevented Nnauye from holding a planned press conference at a Dar es Salaam hotel after his sacking.
“I don’t expect to see any major rift that could affect the performance of the government as a result of conflicts between some government officials,” Benson Bans, a Dar es Salaam-based political analyst told Reuters.
“Recent opinion polls give Magufuli an approval rating of over 80 percent so he is still very popular among Tanzanians and has the mandate to push through his reforms.”
The president also warned the Media in the country to stick to their role.
All the headlines and photos is about that story… It was just one person doing it, but it has been portrayed as if it was the government doing it or supporting it.
Media owners be careful. You think you have freedom, but you don’t have it to that extent.”