Investigative journalism is all the rage in Tanzania at the moment, apparently. For the WTF factor, Dar’s tabloids put their more serious minded counterparts to shame. Names and dates don’t figure too much, but their circulation figures don’t lie. This week’s Ijumaa (from Eric Shigongo’s Global Publishers) is no exception: the inside story on the city’s countless hair dressing salons.
Read the full story by clicking here. Read on for edited highlights. This example illustrates a common tabloid theme – fear of women, particularly if they make or spend their own money.
Our report, completed after a long investigation, found prostitution, gay sex, rumour-mongering, marriage breakdown and the drug trade to be some of the things taking place in hair dressing salons.
Many salon owners are the hub of the lesbian scene and use their position to persuade their staff to join them in this sin.
Monica Jeremiah, who has been around a number of salons in Dar, told our investigators that she first got into gay sex after being persuaded by her former boss.
She said her boss used to tell her how beautiful she was. ‘One day after closing the salon, she said I should come home with her to give her company. Little did I know what type of company she had in mind……..’
Monica went on to explain that salon owners don’t just target their staff, but customers too. ……..
Mama Jane, a customer of various salons in Kinondoni, said that if she were a man she’d learn how to do hair so the wife wouldn’t have to go anywhere else to get it done. ……
Our investigation also shows that some big drug dealers use the salon owners as they know so many people. ‘Many people from the streets get their stuff at the salons. The community is damaged, but the police know nothing. ‘
This newspaper wants the responsible officials to keep a close eye on the hair salons and to see what is going on behind closed doors. We believe that a Tanzania without such collapsing morals is possible. Action must be taken.