Tanzania police say they will 'cripple' protesters against Magufuli's government

The Interior Minister also swore to arrest “even those who protest at home”.

Dodoma police chief Gilles Muroto said the two, a farmer and driver, were apprehended for inciting people to protest against the increasing authoritarianism of President Magufuli.

“These two people here were inciting others to protest on April 26, saying on social media that there is no freedom, that there is a dictatorship, which is totally false,” he said while presenting the accused to the press.

Muroto said their arrest would "serve as a lesson to others." He added that anyone daring to protest will end up with “a broken leg and go home as a cripple”.

A call for nationwide protests on April 26, first launched by an opposition activist, has prompted a harsh response from government and even Magufuli himself.

Magufuli said in a speech earlier this month, “some people have failed to engage in real politics and would like to see street protests every day… let them demonstrate and they will see who I am.”

The Interior Minister Mwigulu Nchemba meanwhile swore to arrest “even those who protest at home”.

The 58-year-old took office in 2015 as a corruption-fighting “man of the people” but has earned criticism for his authoritarian leadership style with detractors saying he has clamped down on opposition and freedom of expression.

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