Tanzanian President John Magufuli has banned the broadcasting of family planning advertisements.
A senior official in the ministry of health and gender issues wrote a letter to the head of FHI 360, a U.S.-based non-governmental organization, ordering them to immediately stop airing advertisements under a project called Tulonge Afya (Let’s speak health).
“The ministry intends to revise the contents of all your ongoing radio and TV spots for family planning, thus I request you to stop with immediate effect airing and publishing any family planning contents in any media channels until further notice,” the letter, dated Sept. 19, said.
This comes days after the controversial president said those who use birth control are too lazy to take care of children.
“If you cannot work then opt for family planning but if you can work hard why family planning?” he said.
“Let me tell you in front of the minister of health who is always advocating for family planning, go to farm, work hard … if you have enough food then give birth as you can,” he said during a tour in central Tanzania’s Simiyu region.
Magufuli, who came to power in 2015, has previously come under fire for his authoritarian leadership style. He recently vowed that his ruling party will be “in power forever, for eternity”.
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