An Assessment of the Framework Environmental Law of Zanzibar

Hamudi I. Majamba
Senior Lecturer,
Faculty of Law,
University of Dar-es-Salaam,
PO Box 35093, Dar-es-Salaam,

This paper assesses the Environmental Management for Sustainable Development Act of Zanzibar that came into force in 1996 but whose implementation and enforcement has been impeded by a number of factors. It provides a background analysis of the evolution of the Act from its early development stages. The background provides, in part, a basis for the argument that the difficulty encountered in effectively implementing the Act is partly attributed to its evolutionary history. An assessment of the institutional framework and mandates that have been put in place, the enforcement mechanism and the role of local communities, in the wake of the mushrooming of private investment, is also made.

On the one hand, the paper notes that the Act has been to some extent a welcome development in the body of environmental management laws in the region and provides an important guide for improving or developing comprehensive legislation related to environmental management and conservation. On the other hand, the paper details some of the problems encountered or likely to be met in its implementation. Recommendations, which would be useful for jurisdictions in the region in endeavours to tailor comparable provisions of their legislation and avoid pitfalls in efforts to manage environmental resources sustainably, are provided. It is hoped that this appraisal will shed some light on an extremely important piece of legislation, which is unfortunately neither known nor accessible to a multitude of stakeholders and ordinary people within the isles itself, on Tanzania Mainland, within the region and the world.


Enforcement of environmental law, environmental dispute settlement, environmental impact assessment, environmental policy, framework environmental law, institutional arrangements for the environmental law, international obligations on environmental law, management and conservation, stakeholders’ participation in environmental management, sustainable development, Tanzania, Zanzibar.             LEAD Journal - ISSN 1746-5893