The Department of State is publicly designating Paul Christian Makonda under Section 7031(c) of the FY 2020 Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act due to his involvement in gross violations of human rights, which include the flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, or the security of persons. Specifically, the Department has credible information that Makonda was involved in such violations in his capacity as the Regional Commissioner of Dar es Salaam. In that role, he has also been implicated in oppression of the political opposition, crackdowns on freedom of expression and association, and the targeting of marginalized individuals.
The United States remains deeply concerned over deteriorating respect for human rights and rule of law in Tanzania. This includes actions taken by the government that curtail freedom of expression, freedom of association, and right of peaceful assembly; target marginalized people and the political opposition; and jeopardize life.
Section 7031(c) provides that, in cases where the Secretary of State has credible information that foreign officials have been involved in significant corruption or a gross violation of human rights, those individuals and their immediate family members are ineligible for entry into the United States. The law also requires the Secretary of State to publicly or privately designate such officials and their immediate family members. In addition to the public designation of Paul Christian Makonda, the Department is also publicly designating his spouse, Mary Felix Massenge.
These actions against Paul Christian Makonda underscore our concern with human rights violations and abuses in Tanzania, as well as our support for accountability for those who engage in such violations and abuses. We call on the Tanzanian government to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the freedom of expression, association, and the right of peaceful assembly.