Ok so first off, today I fell into a ditch by the cafeteria at the University. I was walking across the paved courtyard area, looking at the cafeteria and out of nowhere there was an uncovered drainage ditch which I did not see as I was trying to decide if I wanted to go inside to get a soda. I am not hurt (just bruised my ego a little) but I did learn to watch where I am walking in Africa. The sidewalks are just as bad as the roads.
Today we spent our final training day at the University drafting practice wills. It is a bit different here than in the U.S. in that Tanzania has at least 3 different systems of law at play. There is customary law within the tribes or groups. There is common law or statutory law (a hand-me-down from the European colonization of Africa). There is Sharia law (more than a third of the population is Islamic). What is difficult to wrap my mind around, as an American, is that with this type of legal pluralism, it is not so much where you are (like in the U.S...what state am I in?) to determine which is applicable, but more the circumstances and to whom you are working with. They have choices of law and courts in many cases depending on the beliefs and lifestyle of the individual involved. All that being said, it is fascinating that with all these cultures intermingling, Tanzania has been peaceful for almost half a century since it was created, unlike almost all of its African neighbors.
|Billboard on the campus at the University|
After leaving the University, we went to visit with another amazing woman Jane Magigita, who is on the board of an NGO (non-governmental organization) called Equality for Growth. This organization is doing some amazing things for legal and human rights for the women who work here in Tanzania. She was a very helpful person to talk to and provided some excellent insights about our individual research projects in addition to sharing about her experience here.
|They like Glee!|
|Random fruit market on the side of the road|
|Butcher shop. Not ready for this adventure yet.|
|One of the Maasai tribe members I mentioned in a previous post.|