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About Tanzania

"Father of the Nation"

Until 1885, chiefs of over 130 tribes with different languages ruled the Tanzania mainland (Tanganyika).  From 1885 until the First World War, Tanzania mainland was a German Colony. After Germany lost the war, Tanganyika came under the British as a United Nations trusteeship. The United Republic of Tanzania is a union of Tanganyika and the Islands of Zanzibar. Tanganyika and Zanzibar obtained their independence from the British in 1961 and 1963, respectively. They united in 1964 to form Tanzania.

The nation was blessed with a very strong Catholic President, Julius Kambarage Nyerere, after independence in 1961. He stressed unity among the 125 different tribes and established Swahili as the national language. He also encouraged the citizens of Tanzania to greet each other as brothers in the marketplace.

The Capital of Tanzania was Dar Es Salaam from Independence until the 1980s, when it was changed to Dodoma, in the center of Tanzania. President Julius Nyerere wanted to develop Dodoma because the inhabitants were considered very poor and remote. Dar Es Salaam is a large city of business and commerce.

President Nyerere was for the poor, marginalized and the orphaned. People in Tanzania refer to him as the “Father of the Nation”. He is now designated a Servant of God in the canonization process. 


Click here to find out about a day in the life of a Tanzanian child. 

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