NEWS

                                                  The 12 consultants selected for TMF's media viability consultancy programme.

Dar es Salaam - On 16 March 2021, Tanzania Media Foundation (TMF) commenced training and coaching sessions under its media viability consultancy programme, which is being run with funding from DW Akademie.  The sessions, which are being conducted online, will run from 16 March until 13 April 2021 and for now are only open to 12 participants, who were selected from 46 applications received in November 2020 in response to TMF’s call for applications for its media viability consultancy programme. 

The media viability consultancy programme was developed by TMF and DW Akademie through a series of consultative meetings and activities held between October 2019 and February 2020. The programme involves promoting broader understanding and application of the media viability concept to media development in Tanzania through training, coaching, mentoring and other forms of media sector capacity building as well as through media sector research. 

“The media viability consultancy programme is a first of its kind. It is important because of its two-fold focus. First, it will enable more people - that is the consultants - to understand and discuss media viability as a concept, which is an important step towards increasing its effective application to improving media sector performance. Second, consultants will be linked to 10 small to medium size media businesses to work with them to resolve barriers to the production of high quality public interest journalism at these media outlets,” said TMF Interim Executive Director, Fausta Musokwa.

She congratulated the 12 participants, who TMF selected because of their experience and expertise as well as the desire to be part of efforts to generate media sector solutions and so contribute to access to information and freedom of experience, particularly in underserved communities.

The participants include Albert Mkongwa and Malega Williams Kalembire, whose backgrounds are in finance and business. Others are Baraka Kiranga, who worked with TMF between 2017 and 2018 and Sebastian Marondo, whose backgrounds are in technology and innovation. The remaining eight participants Faraja Mgwabati, Michael Baruti, Esther Mngodo, Said Mkabakuli, Hatibu Madudu, Rehema Muniko, Said Mmanga and  Edda Duncan all have media sector knowledge and experience along with expertise in development, banking and communication. 

After the first cohort of consultants are certified, TMF expects to review and evaluate the effectiveness of the sessions in promoting media viability before making them publicly and broadly available.

Said Mkabakuli, who is a marketing and corporate affairs manager at TIB Development Bank, says he has great expectations of the programme.

                           Said Mkabakuli, a marketing and corporate affairs manager at TIB Development Bank

“I anticipate that the training will enhance my capacity to assist small and medium sized media outlets, specifically on media business and financial strategy and human resource management for the media. I intend to ensure small and medium sized media outlets become bankable and that as a result they will be able to report without advertisers’ influence.”

Participants in the programme will cover modules in legal and political landscape, human resource management, technology and innovation, media business and financial strategy and media content production before being assigned to work with selected small to medium sized radio stations.

Rehema Muniko, an assistant lecturer at the University of Dar Es Salaam's School of Journalism and Mass Communication (UDSM-SJMC)

Rehema Muniko, an assistant lecturer at the School of Journalism and Mass Communication of the University of Dar es salaam (UDSM-SJMC), explains how she envisions the validity of the programme.

“ So far the training has enlightened my understanding of what kind of consultant I am, or which part in the consultant spectrum I should take in various situations, whether to be [a provider of] an expert service or expert support. I will share this knowledge with students at the University of Dar es Salaam School of Journalism and Mass Communication so that they become aware of how community media operates, and actually provide them with real time experience which I will acquire from the practical sessions of the media viability training. But above all, I will equip Mlimani Media, as a community radio with the needed skills or capacity so as to move steps ahead.”

Saidi Mohamed Mmanga, an experienced journalist and recently the station manager at Uyui FM radio in Tabora, explains the need to share knowledge with those who won’t have the opportunity to attend TMF’s media viability consultancy programme.

“I'm going to share the knowledge and skills from this training with media staff from small and medium radio stations in order to have sustainable quality journalism to solve different issues facing the media industry in Tanzania especially in the content aspect.”

The programme’s coaching and training will be guided by a curriculum developed by TMF with University of Dar es Salaam mass communications and journalism lecturer Dr. Paul Dotto Kuhenga and conducted by sector experts such as Wenceslaus Mushi, Valerie Msoka, Noelah Ntukamazina, Jumanne Mtambalike and Joel Nanauka.

Written for TMF by Alfred Ganzo, TMF Communication Volunteer; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Gender in media discussion during one of the master class one sessions at TMF office on 20th January, 2021

Towards having a transformative impact on gender and inequality in Tanzania through the media, Tanzania Media Foundation (TMF) has secured funding from the Canadian High Commission in Tanzania through Canada Funds for Local Initiatives (CFLI) to build the capacity of 10 female journalists and newsroom leaders to promote gender equality.

The funding will enable TMF to run series of master classes and other tailor-made activities for participants and their media houses from 19th January until 15 February this year. The three master classes will be conducted both physically by meeting at the TMF office in Kinondoni, Dar es Salaam and online. The 10 participants in the programme are all female journalists in leadership in editorial and managerial roles from eight regions in Tanzania; that is, Mara, Kagera, Mwanza, Morogoro, Dodoma, Mbeya, Tabora and Pwani.

At the end of the first master class on 22nd January, journalists expressed their appreciation to TMF, all saying that the first session has been productive.

Zania Miraji, a station manager at Dodoma FM explains.

“This training is very good for us media leaders. As a station manager I have found that despite some of our media [houses] having a gender policy, it is still not practically practical and there are other important things that are not in our policies.”

She went on to say, “I think there is a need for us who have been trained by TMF to make changes to ensure gender equality in our media [houses] so that even when we are talking about gender issues we have enough understanding.”

Jennipher Adam who is the first female editor at Ushindi FM Radio in Mbeya explains how she has been able to benefit from the first master class.

“It has been such a productive training as I have greatly widened my understanding on gender issues in the media context, which knowledge will be extended to my colleagues as well, who have not been able to receive the training.”

 

Jennipher Adam who is the first female editor at Ushindi FM Radio in Mbeya
Jennipher Adam (in red), the first female editor at Ushindi FM Radio in Mbeya

Fausta Musokwa, TMF’s Interim Executive Director explains the aim of the project.

“The project aims to enhance gender equality by building the skills and capacities of 10 women in decision-making roles to be effective advocates for women and girls rights and for gender equality through the media in Tanzania.”

She further explains the reason for TMF engaging only women in this project.

“The programme is designed to focus on women because we want to help build the capacity of the few women in leadership or decision-making roles in media.”

According to a 2019 study by the Media Council of Tanzania (which you can access through https://bit.ly/369Cg5r ), women are still underrepresented at management level in the media sector in Tanzania.

Dastan Kamanzi, TMF’s Programme Specialist, explains how the project will be beneficial to participants and the media sector, broadly.

 “The project is expected to lead to generation of a database of 100 story ideas sourced through engagement of women from the regions from which the participants are based.”

 “Our key selection criteria was the extent to which an applicant, her media house and the audience are likely to benefit from the programme,” he added.

Dr. Geofrey Chambua, a gender consultant at the Tanzania Gender Networking Programme (TGNP), who led a session exploring gender dimensions in the media, commended TMF for coming up with the initiative and thanked participants for their vibrance during his class.

“Participants demonstrated their high competences and reasons for selection by being very active and vibrant throughout the session. This was evidenced by their questions, the way they shared experiences and case studies and active participation in the session.”

Dr. Geofrey Chambua, a gender consultant at TGNP, leading a session exploring gender dimensions in the media

He added that however most seemed to be very new to the field of gender and newly exposed to gender concepts which may require them to have a refresher course in the near future.

Other presenters during the first master class were Rose Mwalimu, a veteran journalist and media expert who has worked with UNESCO, RTD (Radio Tanzania Dar Es Salaam), Pili Mtambalike, TMF founding member and formerly with Media Council of Tanzania (MCT) and Gladness Munuo who has worked extensively with Gender and Media Southern Africa-Tanzania Network (GEMSAT) and Gender Links to help media houses in Tanzania adopt gender policies.

In attendance alongside TMF staff in order to enrich participants understanding were Monica Sedere from TGNP, Mary Kafyome from Tanzania Media Women's Association (TAMWA) and Esther Mngodo, former news editor at The Citizen Newspaper.

The second master class in the programme will be held online on 28th and 29th January and the final one from 10 to 12 February 2021 at TMF's office in Kinondoni district, Dar es Salaam.

Written for TMF by Alfred Ganzo, TMF Communication Volunteer; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


An online fact-checking training session with journalists from across different regions in Tanzania as conducted by Nukta Africa from 25th to 27th Nov, 2020.

 Charles Kombe, 26, a correspondent for Voice of America in Tanzania, has worked as a journalist for 5 years. However, he thinks that his recent participation in training on fact-checking will greatly improve his work. 

“It [the training] has greatly improved my verification skills,” he said. “It sounds surreal ...that one can verify information using Google images. I am confident that now I can share information to the public that is accurate due to the skills I acquired from the training, by using tools like TinEye reverse image search, Invid and so on.” 

The training, which was conducted online from 25th to 27th November, 2020 by Tanzania Media Foundation (TMF) in collaboration with Nukta Africa, ran for three days and had 10 participating journalists from Dar es Salaam, Mwanza, Mbeya, Mara, Tabora, Geita and Njombe. 

According to TMF’s Interim Executive Director, Fausta Musokwa, the training will enable journalists to produce high quality and accurate stories which is in line with the organisation’s mission to promote public interest journalism. 

“TMF organised the training with funding and support from DW Akademie, under our 2020 to 2021 partnership to enhance media viability and innovation in the media landscape in Tanzania,” said Musokwa. 

“We hope to see the media sector in Tanzania embrace and apply new fact-checking skills more actively to overcome misinformation, disinformation and malinformation. This will in turn enhance its role in working for public interest.” 

Journalists have a key role to play in addressing misinformation, disinformation and malinformation, which are becoming an increasing problem in Tanzania. The fast circulation of false or misleading information, especially through social media platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and on blogs and even from mainstream media outlets like newspapers means journalists need to regularly develop new fact checking skills to keep up. 

TMF is keen to be part of efforts to address media sector challenges and will continue to support the 10 journalists who took part in the training to become champions for the fact-checking and verification of information.

Nuzulack Dausen, CEO and Executive Director of Nukta Africa, which designed the course content and delivered the training, lauded the TMF administration for its efforts. Nukta Africa also runs Nukta Fakti, a Facebook-based Swahili-language platform for fact-checking.

“TMF’s investment in fact checking training and mentorship programs will help to equip journalists with skills on how to identify, research and debunk the ever growing fake news in the world. We are certainly sure that this initiative is planting a seed among media professionals and the general public on verifying information before sharing on social media.”

Daniel Mwingira, a fact checking trainer at Nukta Africa says he is optimistic that the training will have a positive impact on the participants. 

“We thank TMF for funding the training, and hope that the trained champions will reach out to and share the knowledge with fellow journalists.”

Vivian Pyuza, a news editor from CG FM radio in Tabora said that the programme will enable her to share the knowledge she gained with her colleagues. 

“I wish to see such training conducted continuously especially to us [fact-checking] champions to enrich our capacities.”

TMF’s vision is of a vibrant, independent, responsible and diverse media sector in Tanzania, that serves public interest. Over the next three years, TMF will support the production of high quality public interest journalism that promotes accountability, enable citizens to use the media to engage with each other and with duty bearers regarding their priorities, perspectives and interests and influencing development and media sector actors learning, innovating and creating solutions to sector viability challenges. Promotion of fact-checking is one of the key activities in TMF’s 2020 to 2023 strategic plan, whose implementation is underway.

Written for TMF by Alfred Ganzo, TMF Communication Volunteer; This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.