Preventing Radicalisation and Violent Extremism in Zanzibar

Tanzania has for a long time been viewed as a stable country in a region where civil wars have ravaged countries. The country has remained peaceful and stable even when some of its neighbours descended into civil wars. In fact, Tanzania has for many years hosted refugees from its war-torn neighbours. However, the rise of incidents of violence and terrorism-related attacks in the last seven years in both mainland and the islands of Zanzibar and Pemba have raised fear that Tanzania could become a new frontier of radicalisation, extremism and terrorism in Eastern Africa. Indeed, it is this problem of religious radicalisation and violent extremism which the Communities Richer in Diversity project is addressing. Faith to Action Network’s partner in Tanzania is the Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar (ADZ) and their project is titled Preventing Radicalisation and Violent Extremism in Zanzibar. The project aims to build on the Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar’s previous interventions on these issue. The project’s goal will be to increase religious and cultural harmony among the communities in Zanzibar. Its activities will be implemented in North A, South, Urban and West Districts, and Pemba Districts, where the incidents of radicalisation and extremism are more prevalent.

While implementing the project, Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar will rely on its experience and lessons learned from previous interventions on similar projects. When Tanzania started witnessing violent attacks related to religious radicalisation and violent extremism, Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar started implementing projects which aimed at preventing radicalisation and violent extremism in the islands of Unguja and Pemba. For example, in 2016, ADZ ran a project which used education and research to prevent violent extremism. The project sought to produce a clear understanding and guidelines about violent extremism and radicalisation for educators in schools and colleges. The work was then adopted by colleges as part of their topics when teaching on violent extremism. One of those colleges is Morogoro Bible College.

Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar also took part in a one-year training project namely Community Awareness Program to Prevent Violent Extremism in Tanzania funded by The Green Light Project. The project involved numerous civil society organizations from Tanga, Morogoro, Arusha and Zanzibar. Each region was represented by 10 participants. Out of 40 participants, 10 were female. The project enhanced competence, understanding and skills of the concerned individuals on causes of radicalism and violent extremism and how to solve disputes through peaceful methods. In essence, therefore, Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar will use the CRID project to consolidate the achievements of the previous projects. The project will further the Diocese’s goal of promoting religious harmony and peaceful con-existence in Tanzania by reducing religious radicalisation and violent extremism in Zanzibar.

As part of project preparations, a team from African Council of Religious Leaders – Religions for Peace and Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa travelled to Zanzibar from 16-24 July 2018 to orient the Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar team to the grant requirements and EU rules and principles. Faith to Action Network provided additional technical assistance on the post-mission review, quality and standards of documentation and the contracting process in August and September 2018. Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar signed the subgrant agreement in September and started implementing the project in October 2018.

Most recent interfaith work in Zanzibar

  • Debre Tabor, which translates as “Mount Tabor,” is a town and district in north-central Ethiopia. According to the 2007 national census from the Central Statistical Agency of Ethiopia (CSA), this town had a total population of 55,596, with 27,644 males and 27,952 females. The majority of the population practices Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity, with 96.72% identifying

  •   Kilifi County is located along the Kenyan coast, north of the city of Mombasa. The county is home to Kaya elders from the Mijikenda community. The Kaya elders’ preference for upholding their traditional religious practices makes them unique. However, Kilifi County has gained notoriety for the murder of elderly people on suspicion of witchcraft.

  • We, the members and Friends of Faith to Action Network; Gathered here in Geneva Switzerland attending the International Conference entitled ‘Welcoming the Stranger and Shaping the Future’ ; Acknowledging and celebrating the important World Refugee Day observed on the 20th of June annually; Concerned, by the ever-increasing number of displaced people worldwide with latest statistics

  • Faith to Action Network took part in a closure  meeting for the project Communities Richer in Diversity (CRID). The partners discussed the complexities and dynamics of the different approaches each undertook in their context. They emphasized that strained interfaith relations mediated by deeply rooted cultural factors related to multiple and intersecting form of identities contributes

  • The people of Yumbe district in Uganda are predominantly Muslim (76%) with a large Christian minority (24%). Yumbe and the entirety of the West Nile region was severely affected by both phases of the Ugandan civil war, through from 1979 to 2000, with various armed groups recruiting their combatants from the region. With the official