The National Identity Card: purpose for its introduction, whether it is compulsory for citizens to carry it; whether this is by law or by police practice that it is produced on demand particularly in Zanzibar [TZA32853.E]

In 1997, the government of Tanzania reportedly negotiated a contract with a British firm, M/s Reginal Service to make Tanzania's "first generation of national identity cards, " which would have been obligatory for all Tanzanians (The East African 2 Apr. 1998). However, in April 1998, Ms/Reginal Service and the government of Tanzania were reportedly re-negotiating a new contract and had not reached an agreement (ibid.).

The East African states that Tanzania had wanted to introduce ID cards for its nationals for a long time but that this was not possible because the government lacked funds (ibid.). This information could not be corroborated by sources consulted by the Research Directorate and it is not clear whether the agreement was finally signed and ID cards issued.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please see below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


The East African [Nairobi]. "Tanzania: Tanzania Ids on Hold as Negotiations Drag on." (NEXIS)

Additional Sources Consulted

Africa Confidential [London]. January 1998 -September 1999. Vols. 38-40. Nos. 1-25.

Africa Research Bulletin: Political, Social and Cultural Series [Oxford]. 1998. Vols. 35. Nos. 1-12.

Amnesty International. 1999. Amnesty International Report 1999. New York: Amnesty International USA.

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 1998 1999 United States Department of State. Washington, DC: United States Government Printing Press.

The Indian Ocean Newsletter [Paris]. Weekly. January 1998-October 1999. Nos. 793-875.

Keesing's Record of World Events [Cambridge]. January 1998-June 1999. Monthly. Vols. 44-45. Nos. 1-6.

Resource Centre. Country File. Tanzania. 1998-1999.

Electronic sources: IRB databases, LEXIS/NEXIS, World Network Connection (WNC)

Internet: [Accessed: 22 Oct. 1999]; [Accessed: 10 Oct. 1999]

Unsuccessful attempts to reach oral source.