Denmark suspends aid to Tanzania over anti-gay comments

Tanzanian flag, Tanzania, Africa

Tanzania is set to lose funding from its second largest donor, Denmark, over what it terms as “unacceptable homophobic comments” made by a government official.

This could see the east African nation miss out on close to $10 million worth of aid money the Danish government was set to channel.

Tanzania has been under pressure from the international community from remarks made by Dar es Salaam commissioner Paul Makonda on an anti-gay crackdown.

The Tanzanian government has distanced itself from the comments.

Denmark’s Development minister Ulla Tornaes said she was very concerned by the comments.

“I am very worried about the negative development in Tanzania, the latest being the completely unacceptable homophobic statements from a commissioner,” Minister for Development Cooperation Ulla Tornaes said on Twitter on Wednesday.

President John Magufuli’s government has also been criticised by opposition politicians and international rights groups for what they say is growing authoritarianism and intolerance of dissent.

The World Bank has also scrapped a plan to loan Tanzania $300 million after the country reaffirmed its policy of banning pregnant girls from school and recently made it a crime to question official statistics.

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