Introduction

THRDC board of Directors is one of the cooperative and responsible Boards of Directors comprises of nine members and one board secretary, based on the representation of Human Rights stakeholders and Human Rights thematic groups. Gender balance is highly observed as there is an equal number of at least three female and four male directors in THRDC board of Directors.

JOAQUINE ANTOINETTE DE-MELLO

THRDC BOARD CHAIRPERSON

Joaquine Antoinette De – Mello, a lawyer and, a Judge of the High Court of Tanzania.  LLB Honours (University of Dar Es Salaam), MBA– International Trade & Business (Insititute of Finance Management.

Previous Chairperson: Technical Team on Drafting of the Tanzania National Human Rights Action Plan (NHRAP) Establishment of Law School of Tanzania: In consultation with the Governing Council of TLS, successfully engaged the 4th phase President of the United Republic, Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete to pave and clear the way for the allocation of disputed land at Sam Nujoma Dar Es Salaam for construction of Law School of Tanzania, by virtue of courtesy call to his Excellency in Chamwino Dodoma, in the year 2007.

Vice Board Chair: Law School of Tanzania 2008 – 2011, Spearheaded in collaboration with the Technical Team the establishment of the Law School.

Council Member East Africa Law Society (EALS) & the Deputy Secretary-General (DSG) – Spearheaded a strategic courtesy call to His Excellency the 4th phase President of the United Republic of Tanzania in the year 2011, pledging for allocation of land for construction of the society’s premise in Arusha where it is operating as the head office.

Executive Director – Tanzania Women Lawyers Association – 2006 -2007, An organization with a vision and focus of providing protection and promotion of women and Children’s rights.

Technical Member – Interim Management Team establishing Tanzania Women’s Bank (TWB). Recognized for In Recognition of immense Contribution and Support to Tawja, 2019-2021 Award by TAWJA, Woman of Courage 2012, Award by the American Embassy Dar Es Salaam, Life Time Achievement 2012 by the Tanganyika Law Society for Out – Standing Service to the Profession and the Community at large. Dedication and Commitment 2008, as First Woman President of the Tanganyika Law Society, the Bar of the country of United Republic of Tanzania Competence involves; High Court Judge, addressing all legal disputes, Criminal, Civil, Land, Commercial, Probate and Inheritance, Matrimonial, Labour, Economic & Organized Crimes, Administrative Justice, and Constitutional. – ADJUDICATIONCorporate LawyerHuman Rights (Women & Children, Legal Aid for Vulnerable and Marginalized People)Litigation & Arbitration, both Criminal and CivilInternational Business & TradeConflict Resolution & MediationLeadership & Governance, and Gender Skills.

MR. HASSAN KHAMIS JUMA 

THRDC BOARD VICE-CHAIRPERSON

My name is Hassan Khamis Juma holder of Mater Degree in Business Administration from Open University of Dar es salaam in 2011. I am Executive Director of Association of NGOs in Zanzibar (ANGOZA) from 2017 to date, also Vice Chairperson of Board of Directors of Tanzania Human Right Defender coalition (THRDC) from 2021, before I was only member of Board of Directors of THRDC. On 2020 I was appointed to be member of Board of Trustee of Micro Finance Organization called Jumuiya ya Changomoto. This organization provides soft loan to women and youth for the purpose of creating self- employment. Based on my wider experience in the Civil Society Sector I have been member many technical committees. For example in 2015 I have been one of the members of technical Committee for developing Zanzibar five year Development plan called (MKUZA III for 2015 – 2020). Recently I have been appointed by her Excellency President of United Republic of Tanzania to be member of National Advisory Committee for the implementation of Tanzania commitments on Generation Equality Forum for five years from December 2021 to December 2026.

MR. ONESMO OLENGURUMWA 

THRDC BOARD SECRETARY

Onesmo Paul Olengurumwa, a Masters student of Research and Public Policy at the University of Dar es Salaam. He was born in Loliondo-Ngorongoro in 1980. He did my LLB at the University of Dar es Salaam and graduated with honours in 2009. He holds a diploma in Security and Protection Management for Human Rights Defenders and Social Organizations offered by Protection International. He has Also Acquired a Certificate In Security Management and Risk Assessment at the York University. In addition, Onesmo has been also mentored by renown and well experienced Organization Development Expert (OD) for one year (2013). He has attended and presented papers in various international, regional and national human rights meetings and forums.

His professional interests and expertise which is evident through theoretical and practical experiences are based on the areas of human rights, international human rights law, research, social justice, good governance, policy and African Pastoralism.

Onesmo served as a President of the UDSM Human Rights Association (2008-9). The association was vibrant and vocal and its duties were to organize conferences, seminars and workshops on issues regarding Rwanda genocide; albino killings, Universal Declaration of Human Rights as well as the campaign against the Death Penalty among other things. He also coordinated public lectures, seminars, researches, and workshops to highlight legal issues and enable students and members of the community from the UDSM Law Society where he served as the secretary to actively contribute in raising awareness and engage on a variety of audiences.

Based on his hardworking spirit and experience of working in the Human Rights field, immediately after the first degree, he joined the Legal and Human Rights Centre (LHRC) one of the reputable human rights bodies in Tanzania to work as a researcher and writer of the Tanzania human rights reports from 2009-2012. The treasured three years spent with LHRC transformed him professionally whereby he embarked into yet another journey to fulfil his passion. He has written widely and my works have been used as a source of reference in many publications and other research works. Onesmo has vast experience working with and for communities in a multicultural Tanzania, within 8 years of working experience has travelled to all 28 regions in the county and conducted surveys and research in human rights

Thus, he co-founded the Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition and beginning January 1st, 2013 he became the First National Coordinator/CEO) of the same Coalition which has more than 115 members most of them being Human Rights Organizations. Here he strives to create a secure environment for all HRDs in Tanzania and has overall responsibility for strategic direction, a positioning of the Coalition in the human rights defence field, and the efficient functioning of the Coalition- focusing on the goals of the Five Year Strategic Plan for 2013-2017.

Ms. JAMILA M. JUMA 

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Jamila Mahmoud Juma is a holder of Masters in Public Policy Analysis and Administration from Peking University, China. She is experienced in leadership, administration, lobbying and advocacy and policies analysis for over 10 years. She pursued her first degree in law (LL.B, Hon) at Zanzibar University. She has involved in local and international legal matters and Gender Based Violence (GBV). In addition, she has worked in a team, designed research projects, carried them through and presented research finding both orally and in writing. She is a self-motivated, ambitious and has good communication and organization skills. Also she is a founder member and the Executive Director, of Zanzibar Female Lawyers Association, Founder and Board Member of Tanzania Human rights Coalition, Founder of Zanzibar Gender Coalition, member of UN Women Advisory board, and member of African Women Leaders Network (AWLN)

MR. EDWIN SOKO

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Mr Edwin Soko is a Human Rights defender in Tanzania, a media activist and the Chairperson of the Organization of Journalists Against Drugs Abuse and Crime in Tanzania (OJADACT). He has more than seven (7) years of experience enhancing the security and protection of human rights defenders in Tanzania. He has also been a member of the Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition (THRD) since 2014 working hand in hand with THRDC in addressing issues related to security and protection of human rights defenders. Mr Soko is currently a new THRDC Board Member.

In 2014, Mr.Soko participated in the Universal Periodic Review process chaired by THRDC, representing the Media thematic area in reviewing the media landscape in Tanzania and assessing United Nation terms adopted by Tanzania Government to adhere to media freedom and right to information in Tanzania.

In 2012 after the brutal killing of the late Journalist Daudi Mwangosi by police, he mobilized Tanzanian Journalists to demand the Police Force to be accountable for Mwangosi’s death.

In 2015, he condemned the government’s decision to bypass bad laws such as the Media Services Act-2016, Cyber Crimes Act-2016 and the Statistics Act-2015.

As the Chairperson of the Association of  Journalists  Against Drugs and Crime in Tanzania (OJADACT), Mr Soko often engages in the preparation of press conference and issuing of press statements condemning human rights violations in Tanzania. For example, In 2015, he issues a press statement following the Tanzanian Government’s decision to restrict the live broadcast of Parliamentary sessions. Also, In 2015 he met with media houses to address the ban Mwanahalisi Newspaper.

In 2014 he was appointed by the Media Council of Tanzania (MCT) to be an ambassador of Press Freedom Violation Register (PFVR). One  of  his key  roles  is  to  collect  information of  violations against Journalists   and  submitting reports to MCT for discussion and  taking actions.

Also the  Committee  to  Protect  Journalists (CPJ) in 2016,  appointed him as a National Focal person, responsible for reporting on issues  related  to  Journalists    violations  in Tanzania and  submitting  a  quarterly   reports. These reports are used to rank countries in the list of adherence to media freedom.

MR MAXENCE M. MELO

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Mr Maxence M. Melo is a well-recognized Champion of Online Freedom of Expression in Tanzania and East Africa. He is also a supporter of Internet Freedom embedded with quality content. Maxence is the Managing Director of Jamii Media Ltd, a company which owns and runs the most visited website in East and Central Africa; the JamiiForums.com. He is currently a new THRDC Board member.

Mr Melo is a Certified Digital Security Expert with ten (10) years of providing consultancies, training, mentorships, and coaching in traditional and new media. His personal attributes are reflected in tireless efforts to promote the culture of transparency, accountability, and openness through JamiiForums.com and FikraPevu.com under the slogan “Where We Dare to Talk Openly”.

He is also a founding member of the 255 Netizens, an NGO based in Tanzania advocating for Internet Freedom, Internet Governance and Online Freedom of Expression.

Mr Maxence Melo is a seasoned Civil Engineer by profession with 8 years of experience in the construction industry.

MR SILAS NYUMBA

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Silas Nyumba, a Masters student of Project Planning and Management at the University of Dar es Salaam. He is an Associate Certified Public Accountant (ACPA) and registered with the National Board of Accountants and Auditors Tanzania and a holder of a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting from the University of Dar es Salaam.

He is a finance expert with more than 8 years’ experience in financial management, grants management, NGO’s compliance, auditing, human resource management, planning and budgeting, preparation of financial statements, procurement and project management, financial analysis and interpretation, budget and variance analysis, supervising the preparation of payroll, reviewing bank reconciliation, setting and supervising internal control systems and is familiar with using various accounting systems including QuickBooks, Vote Book Financial Management Information System, Tally and Sage Paste.

He held many positions over the years, such as Head of Finance and Administration, internal Auditor, Assistant Accountant, and Project Accountant in different organizations, including Tanzania Women Lawyers Association (TAWLA).

Mr. Silas Nyumba is currently the Head of Finance and Administration at the Tanzania Women Lawyers Association (TAWLA) since 2016 to date. TAWLA is a human rights organization founded for the purpose of promoting equal rights and access to all by focusing on vulnerable and marginalized groups, especially women and children.

He served as the President of the Accounting Association of Dar es Salaam University (AADU) from 2012-2013. The association was alive and managed to organize conferences, seminars, and workshops on issues of accounting professionals, entrepreneurship, and career development.

He is also an experienced trainer in financial management and NGO compliance, risk management, resource mobilization, grant management, and procurement.

DR ROSE REUBEN (PhD)

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Mobile: +255 754 314 751

Email: rose.reuben@tamwa.org

DR Rose Reuben (PhD) is currently the Executive Director for the Tanzania Media Women’s Association (TAMWA), Tanzania Human Rights Defender (THDRC) Board  Member, The African Women’s Development and Communications Network (FEMNET) Board Member representing East and Horn of Africa Region, Board Member representing Tanzania in the Eastern African Sub-Regional Support Initiative for the Advancement of Women (EASSI) and Board Member for Women Legal Aid Centre (WLAC)

Professionally Rose Reuben who is the Sociologists specializing in the aspects of Gender and Communication for Social Change has previously worked as an independent consultant focusing on mentoring journalists on investigative and public interest stories related to women and children social rights.  She has also worked with Hivos in the pilot project of the Tanzania Media Fund (TMF) as a senior program officer in charge of the Institution grants, and the Tanzania Broadcasting Corporation (TBC) as the principle journalist, news editor, news reporter, programs producer and the Television and Radio broadcaster.

Her passion is seeing the society that respects human rights in gender perspective

Mrs. ANGELA BENEDICTO

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

She has more than ten years experience advocating for the rights of Child and Young Domestic Workers in the country. Angela is a former domestic worker, who devoted her life to defending against abuse and exploitation of Child Domestic Workers and fighting against child trafficking in Tanzania. She does this by fighting against child labor, i.e. children under the age of 14 being employed by her organization. She is supporting the implementation of the Child Act of 2009, the Ant-Trafficking Act of 2008, the Employment and labor relations Act of 2004 and other International Convention and NPA-VAC She is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in law at The Open University of Tanzania supported by Baker McKenzie Firm through Children Unite based in London. In 2011 Angela attended the International Labor Organization (ILO) to the international conference in Geneva. The aim was to lobby the representative from almost 396 countries from all over the World to sign ILO Convention 189 on decent work for domestic workers. In 2012, Angela attended a Women Forum in Turkey Istanbul whereby she shared her life background and the real situation of domestic workers with the other participants from all over the world. In 2010, she attended the three weeks 1st program in Nairobi Kenya organized by EQUITAS. She continues receiving different training from different organizations, i.e. she received training on women human rights defenders and security by Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition. In 2013, she was selected by US Embassy in Tanzania under the US Department of State to attend International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP). In 2015, Angela was awarded by Her Majesty the Queen of England as among of 60 Young people from Common Wealth Countries whose work is incredible in their society. Angela is empowering Child domestic Workers whom the majority are girls to understand their rights, laws which protect them, and know their responsibilities. She is acting as a role model to girls who think being a domestic worker you cannot do anything else even be a leader and a successful woman in the community. Angela does advocacy campaigns to local and central Government to influence the protection and welfare of Child Domestic Workers are enhanced in the country. She is encouraging parents /guardians to send their girl child to school instead of sending them to work as domestic workers where they face abuse & exploitation, HIV and STDs she also encourages their meaningful participation and involvement in different matters as Youth in the country. Angela is a goal-oriented and compassionate, self-motivated, hardworking; she wants to see changes on domestic workers’ articulacy adolescent girls’ rights agenda be on the national agenda.

EDWARD POROKWA

THRDC BOARD MEMBER

Edward Porokwa is a lawyer and an Advocate of the High Court of Tanzania. He has 15 to ten years of experience working with civil society organizations (CSOs) of indigenous peoples. He has extensive knowledge of a wide range of government policies and laws as well as international policies and processes. Mr. Porokwa is currently the CEO of PINGOs Forum, an umbrella organization for Pastoralists and Hunter-Gatherers in Tanzania. He is a member of different institutions such as Tanganyika Law Society and the East Africa Law society. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Laws (LLB Hon) from the University of Dar-es-Salaam and a Master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from ESAMI/Maastricht School of Management.