The discrepancy of labour institutions and the three metrics for labour dispute settlement in Tanzania


  • Grace Kapama High Court of Tanzania – Arusha
  • Wilfred Lameck School of Public Administration and Management – Mzumbe University, Tanzania


Labor Disputes, Labor Dispute Resolution, Industrial relations


In the past fi fteen years, the Tanzanian government enacted new labor institution Act no.7 of 2004 as a part of labor law reforms. The purpose of the reforms was first, to address the problem of the pre-existing discrepancy in the labour institutions and second, to develop the labour institutions which reflect the current socio-economic and political development in the country. One of the institutions created under labour institution Act of 2004 is the commission for mediation and arbitration (CMA) which is responsible for labour dispute settlement. Despite these reforms, the pace of unsettled labour disputes is increasing. The objective of this paper was therefore twofold: fi rst to explore the practice of the current labour institutions in resolving labour dispute in Tanzania and second was to explore the extent to which the current dispute settlement process meet the preconceived standards of dispute settlement namely: effi ciency, equity and voice. In doing this, the paper used a qualitative sample of 60 respondents selected purposely from the commission for Mediation and Arbitration and the high court labour division in Dodoma region in Tanzania. The data from the respondents were collected through documentary review and interviews and analyzed through content analysis and thematic approach. The research shows that, the effi ciency and equity of dispute settlement procedures are aff ected by various factors including lack of resources, the long procedures and the lack of willingness of the parties to resolve the dispute on time. The study recommends that the mediation process should be strengthened to reduce unnecessary delays. But also enough resources including fi nancial and human resource should be allocated to facilitate the mediation process and finally training should be provided to both employees and employers to increase their awareness concerning dispute settlement procedures