Since independence in 1961, occupational health and safety standards in Tanzania were provided for by the Factories Ordinance Cap. 297 of 1950. The government through the Public Service Reform Programme (PSRP) established Occupational Safety and Health Authority under the Executive Agency Act No. 30 of 1997. Occupational Safety and Health Agency was officially launched on 31st August, 2001. It has been set up with the aim of improving the health and well being of workers, and of workplaces. This will be achieved by promoting occupational safety and health (OSH) practices in order to prevent occupational injuries and diseases, and ultimately achieve better productivity.
In any country, in order to improve productivity, among other things, health and safety of all workers need to be considered of high priority. In order to achieve this, a joint effort between the Government, Employers, Employees and the general public is needed.
The Tanzania working population is exposed to several new stress factors as a consequence of globalization including the fast growing of construction and mining sectors. In addition to the well-known traditional hazards, new problems of information technology, nanotechnology and manufactured nano materials, biological risks and biotechnology, chemical risks, new organization of work and psychological stress are encountered by workers, managers and the experts. All these problems require new strategies; new approaches and new competencies. OSHA can help by developing different approaches for ensuring prevention or minimization of such occupational hazards.
The Agency’s services extend to all workplaces as defined by the prevailing legislation i.e. the Occupational Health and Safety Act. No. 5 of 2003 and other subsidiary legislation.