Contribution of ageism on the killings of elderly people in Shinyanga Region, in Tanzania

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University of Dar es Salaam
This study examined the contribution of ageism on the killings of the elderly people in Shinyanga Region in Tanzania. Cross-sectional descriptive design was employed to collect data from 170 respondents including District Commanding Officers (OCD), elderly people, adults (39-59years), District Social Welfare Officers, Regional Social Welfare Principal, District Administrative Secretaries, students and Village Executive Officer (VEO. Questionnaire, interview and Focus Group Discussion were the instruments used to collect data. In the analysis, quantitative data were tabulated, totalled, converted to percentages, and frequencies while qualitative data were descriptively analyzed and some direct quotations were reported. Research findings revealed 182 elderly were killed for the last three years. Secondly, respondents were aware ageism. Thirdly, ageism contributed to killings the elderly in the region. Other factors for killings of the elderly were poverty, dependency, traditional healers, polygamist, inheritance and lack of will. Fifth, the government’s responses to the killings were: assembling the despised elderly, prosecuting the murderers and provision of counselling services. Lastly empowering the elderly economically, use of the religious leaders and writing of the will were the ways that could reduce ageism and the killings. The study recommends review of aging policy; enactment of the law enforcing the right on the protection of the elderly, and expansion of health services to take over the position of traditional healers.
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Aged, Killing of the Older people, Crimes against, Age discrimination, Shinyanga region, Tanzania
Ismael, E (2011) Contribution of ageism on the killings of elderly people in Shinyanga Region, in Tanzania, Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. (Available at