The role of media coverage in Tanzania’s constitutional review process: a case study of Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC1)

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Date
2015
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Publisher
University of Dar es Salaam
Abstract
This study delves into examining media coverage to ascertain their role in Tanzania’s Constitutional Review Process (TCRP) and determine emerging practices linked to their sources of information and dissemination. The study is guided by three specific objectives: to assess the coverage of media during the TCRP, to examine the role played by TBC1 in ensuring access to information by members of the public during the TCRP and to identify challenges TBC1 faced in ensuring public access to information during TCRP. Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC1) is taken as a case study. A total of 50 respondents, who were selected randomly from media practitioners, the Constituent Assembly (CA) and the general public, were recruited to respond to a questionnaire survey. There were also interviews with 20 purposively selected editors and reporters, who responded the first research question on how media outlets reported the TCRP. The researcher used a descriptive method to analyse data obtained from questionnaires and a coding method for data obtained from interviews. Finally, the study established that 90.2 percent of the questionnaire respondents reported that the media had limited access to TCRP information. They also reported that TBC1 was biased in its coverage. Moreover, more than half of the respondents under purposive sampling noted that the media played a commendable role though there was a problem in reporting the CA. The study brought about three conclusions: The media had limited access to the TCRP information, TBC1 was biased in its coverage and hence members of the public did not trust and media was not used as a democratic tool for agenda setting. The study recommends that concerted efforts be made to bridge the gap of information flow and policies should be designed to inculcate a culture of using the media as a cultural and democratic resource rather than a purely a commercial product. Finally, there is a need to encourage citizen journalism, as a means to combat a shortage of resources in the media industry.
Description
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF PN4748.T34N69)
Keywords
Press coverage, Judical review, Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation, Tanzania
Citation
Noya, K. (2015) The role of media coverage in Tanzania’s constitutional review process: a case study of Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC1), Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam