Two journalists reportedly from Kenya were on Saturday arrested by Tanzanian authorities while interviewing members of public on the status of the coronavirus pandemic in the country.
They were allegedly arrested in Tanzania’s Namanga border town.
Confirming the arrest, Longido District Commissioner Frank Mwaisumbe said the two were in the country illegally.
“It is true our security agents arrested the two journalists who claimed were working for a Radio and TV station in Kenya. I do not have the full details of where they work for in Kenya but I will be able to tell you on Monday who they are,” said Mwaisumbe on phone.
He said they had no valid documents to allow them conduct interviews in the country.
Mwaisumbe said the two are detained at Longido Police Station and will be arraigned in court either on Monday or Tuesday upon completion of investigations.
He said that Tanzanian laws dictate that any foreigner found in the country carrying out interviews that have not been sanctioned by the government will be arrested and prosecuted.
“We have no ill motives about foreign journalists but proper procedures must be followed to avoid any embarrassment. Anyone crossing into our country must have travel documents and valid authority to carry out what he/she wants,” said Mwaisumbe.
The Media Council of Kenya said it had received the reports and is in the process of establishing the two journalists belong to which media house.
Media council of Kenya Head of Media Development and Strategy Victor Bwire said they are contacting media houses in the country to identify the journalists as investigations into the incident are underway.