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Anticorruption In Tanzania

1. What is Tanzania’s legislative framework for dealing with bribery?

The Prevention and Combating of Corruption Act, 2007, (PCCA) is the main law governing anti-corruption/bribery in Tanzania, and it applies in conjunction with other related laws such as the Anti Money Laundering Act, 2006, the Economic and Organized Crimes Control Act, [Cap 200 R.E 2002], the Criminal Procedure Act, [Cap 20 R.E 2002], the Public Procurement Act, 2011, and the Public Finance Act, 2004, among others.


2. What is the definition of a bribe?

Although the PCCA does not define the term “bribe,” it does describe corruption and related charges. The PCCA makes it illegal to solicit, accept or obtain, agree to accept or obtain, or attempt to obtain, any advantage for oneself or another person, without lawful consideration or for a lawful consideration that one knows or has reason to believe is inadequate: from anyone they know or have reason to believe has been, or is likely to be, or is about to be, involved in any matter or from anyone they know or have reason to think is interested in, related to, acting for or on behalf of, or otherwise connected to the person in question.

The PCCA further specifies that it is illegal for a person in a position of power or authority to demand or impose sexual favors or any other favor on someone as a condition of receiving employment, a promotion, a right, a privilege, or other preferential treatment in the exercise of their authority.

The PCCA further specifies what constitutes a corruption offense and a corrupt transaction. It is a criminal offense:

  • to bribe someone to request, accept, or receive something, or to try to get something;

  • from anyone, for oneself or someone else;

  • any benefit as an encouragement to, reward for, or otherwise in connection with;

  • any agent, whether or not the agent is the same person as the first stated person, and whether or not the agent has or does not have authority to do, bear to do, or have done or forborne to do;

  • everything pertaining to their principal’s business or affairs.

It is also a crime:

  • to grant, promise, or offer any benefit to someone, whether for their own or for the benefit of others;

  • as a means of enticing, rewarding, or otherwise compensating;

  • any agent, whether or not the agent is the person to whom the benefit is given, promised, or offered, and whether the agent has or does not have authority to do, do, or forbear to do, or to have done or forborne to do; any agent, whether or not the agent is the person to whom the benefit is given, promised, or offered;

  • everything pertaining to their principal’s business or affairs

In general, the PCCA forbids paying or giving gifts to government officials or others in positions of authority in order to gain an unfair business advantage.


3. What are the most serious infractions under this legal system?

The following are examples of corruption offenses that can lead to prosecution:

  • Corrupt contract transactions (Section 16);

  • Corrupt business dealings (Section 17);

  • Corrupt business dealings (Section 18);

  • Procurement corruption (Section 17);

  • Auctions corruption (Section 18);

  • Corruption in the workplace (Section 20);

  • Bribery (Section 23);

  • Extortion (Section 24);

  • Bribery of foreign public officials (Section 21);

  • Bribery of foreign public officials (Section 22);

  • Sexual favors are demanded and imposed (Section 25);

  • Conspiracy (Section 31)

  • Abuse of position (Section 31)


4. What is the legal framework’s jurisdictional scope?

In mainland Tanzania, the Prevention and Combating of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) is responsible for investigating and prosecuting corrupt charges.

Corrupt offenses are classified as economic crimes and, depending on the nature of the offense, can be tried in the High Court of Tanzania (Corruption and Economic Crimes Division), the High Court of Tanzania (Main Registry), or the Resident Magistrates’ Court.


5. What are the legal ramifications of being convicted of bribery?

Bribery violations can result in a term of three to seven years in prison, a fine, or both.

If a person is found guilty of bribery, the proceeds of crime flowing from the offense may be confiscated or forfeited, which can include money attributable to any contract won by corruption, not simply the value of the bribe given.

Individuals convicted of bribery violations may have their assets frozen awaiting the outcome of their criminal case.


6. Who can be held accountable for bribery? (government officials, private citizens, legal entities, and so on.)

The PCCA allows private persons, public officials, and legal companies to be prosecuted for corruption.


7. What are the main anti-bribery regulatory or enforcement bodies?

The PCCB is the competent authority for anti-corruption/bribery investigations and prosecutions, with the Police Force assisting in the investigation and enforcement of the PCCA.

In prosecuting corruption violations, the PCCB is aided by the Director of Public Prosecutions’ office.


8. Can a parent firm be held accountable for bribery committed by a subsidiary?

The PCCA is silent on a parent company’s culpability for bribery committed by a subsidiary.


9. Are bribes considered facilitation payments (small contributions used to expedite regular government action)?

Yes, as long as they fit the PCCA’s criteria for what constitutes corrupt transactions.

Is there any legal restriction on political and charitable contributions?

If a political or charitable gift is made with the intent to gain any advantage without legitimate consideration or for a payment that one knows or has reason to suspect is inadequate, it may be deemed a bribe/corruption.


10. Is corporate hospitality subject to any legal restrictions?

The PCCA does not make it illegal to provide fair and proportionate corporate hospitality to boost a company’s image or build positive connections with its consumers. Bribes shall be examined if corporate hospitality falls within the scope of what is deemed corruption and corrupt offenses.


11. Do bribery offenses have any defenses?

Under the PCCA, there are no specific statutory defenses for bribery and corruption offenses. Depending on the circumstances of the charge, one must demonstrate that the benefit or property was obtained properly.


12. Do you have any deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) or other similar settlement options?

Bribery offenses are eligible for a DPA under section 194A-H of the Criminal Procedure Act, [Cap 20 R.E 2002], as amended by the Written Laws (Miscellaneous Amendments) (No.4) Act, 2019.

After consulting with the victim/investigator of the crime, the prosecutor may offer a DPA, or the accused/their attorney may initiate a DPA and notify the court of their willingness to negotiate a DPA.

If a DPA is offered and accepted, and all of the DPA’s terms and conditions are met:

  • Depending on the facts of the case, the prosecutor may charge the accused with a lower offense, withdraw additional counts, or take any other action that is appropriate.The accused may enter a guilty plea to the charged offense, a lesser offense, or a specific count or counts in a multi-count charge in exchange for the dismissal of additional charges; or

  • The accused may be directed to pay compensation or restitution, or the proceeds and instrumentalities used to conduct the act in issue may be forfeited.