Code of Ethics for Public Servants in Tanzania













1.   Preamble



  1. Ethical Conduct and Behaviors


  1. Respect Human Rights and being



2 - 4

4.   Discipline and Diligence


4 - 6

5.   Team Work


6 - 7

6.   Pursuing of Excellence in Service



7.       Exercise Responsibility and Good Stewardship


8.   Transparency and Accountability



9.   Discharge Duties with Integrity


10 - 11

10. Political Neutrality


11 - 12

11. Conclusion


12 - 13





A Code of Ethics and Conduct for the Public Service is being issued for the first time since our independence in 1961. During the colonial rule a Code of Ethics and Conduct was inherent in different laws and regulations. this approach continued even after independence. Since these laws and regulations were not easily available to all public employees people were generally unaware of expected ethical conduct. 

To counter that shortcoming this code is been widely distributed so that public service employees will clearly understand what is required of them in terms of ethical conduct and standards of performance acceptable in the Public Service. Besides stipulating clearly the standard of behaviour, the code also aims to enhance ethical performance and to regain public confidence. 

The Code will also enable Public Servants to participate fully in fulfilling the mission of the Public Service, which is to deliver quality service to the people of Tanzania efficiently, effectively and with the highest standard of courtesy and integrity. 

In so doing public employees will be effecting the vision of transforming the Public Service into an institution which will be pivotal in achieving sustainable economic growth and prosperity in Tanzania and eradicate poverty in the 21st Century. 

The Code of Ethics and Conduct will apply to all those serving in the Public Service but who are not covered by the Public Leadership Code of Ethics Act. No.13 of 1995. The interpretation of public servant is as stipulated in the Public Service Act. 

The Code also complements existing Laws. Regulations, directives and guidelines issued over the years for the purpose of prescribing the standard of behaviour in the Public Service. 




Matern Y.C. Lumbanga



  1. Ethical Conduct and Behaviors 

In order for the Public Service to be efficient and respected Public Servants must behave and conduct themselves in a manner as stipulated below:- 

    1. Respect all Human Rights and be courteous;
    2. Perform diligently and in a disciplined manner; 
    3. Promote team work; 
    4. Pursue excellence in service; 
    5. Exercise responsibility and good stewardship;
    6. Promote transparency and accountability;
    7. Discharge duties with integrity, and 
    8. Maintain political neutrality. 

This code will explain each of these expectations in more detail. 

  1. Respect Human Rights and being courteous: 
  1. A Public Servant has the right of being a member of any Democratic Political Party and can vote both for his/her Political Rights Party and in general elections. 
  2. A Public Servant can become a member of any religious Religion sect provided that he/she does not contravene the existing laws. However since the government has no religion, religious beliefs should not be advocated in Public Service Offices. 








  1. A Public Service shall not discriminate or harass a Discrimination member of the public or a fellow employee on grounds of sex, tribe, religion, nationality, ethnicity, marital status


or disability.

  1. A Public Servant shall be courteous to senior and fellow Courtesy to all employees as well as to all clients and particularly the clients being served. If a public servant is requested to clarify or to provide direction on issues arising from laws, regulations and procedures, the employee will do so with clarity and promptness.


  1. A Public Servant will respect other employees, their Respect for all rights, as well as their right to privacy especially when handling private and personal information.


6. A Public Servant shall refrain from having sexual relationships at the workplace. Likewise he/she will



avoid all types of conduct which may constitute sexual


harassment which include:-

    1. Pressure for sexual activity or sexual favors with a fellow employee;
    2. Rape, sexual battery and molestation or any sexual assault;
    3. Intentional physical conduct which is sexual in nature such as unwelcome touching, pinching,

patting, grabbing 

and or brushing against another employee's body, hair or clothes; 

    1. Sexual innuendoes, gestures, noises, jokes, comments or remarks to another person about one's sexuality or body; 
    2. Offering or receiving preferential treatment, promises or rewards and offering or submitting to sexual favours. 

III. Discipline and Diligence 

For efficient performance a public servant will perform his/her duties diligently and with a high degree of discipline. An employee shall therefore use the time, skills and expertise one has so as to attain the expected goals. Public servants are expected to: 



i) Obey the law. Decisions should not be biased


because of religion, ethnicity), sex, personal interests or any relationship;  ii) Obey and effect lawful directives; 

  1. Carry out assigned duties efficiently, Where a public servant considers that he she is being asked to act improperly he/she shall report the matter to his her superiors in accordance with the laid down procedures: 


  1. Be ready to work at any duty station;  
  2. Refrain from any conduct which might impair one's work performance; 
  3. Keep punctuality with respect to hours of arrival at work, at all official appointments or engagements and not absent oneself from duty without proper  authorization or reasonable cause;  vii) Avoid the use of rude and abusive language. 

viii) Finish assigned duties within required time and standards. 

2. An employee will maintain personal hygiene, dress in respectable attire in accordance with the acceptable norms of the office as stipulated in staff circulars


3. While out of office, an employee will conduct Private Life. his/her personal life in such a manner that it does not affect his/her services or bring the Public Service into disrepute. He/she is therefore required to refrain from becoming drunk, using narcotic drugs and any other unacceptable behaviour. 

Private Life

4. A Public Servant shall not disclose Secrecy and confidential or official information which has

Secrecy and Confidentiality

Confidentiality been communicated to or has been availed while discharging official duties without due permission. An employee shall continue to 



maintain secrecy and confidentiality of  official information even after one has left the Public Service. 

5.        i) A Public Servant shall not use any official

Disclosure of document or photocopy such. a letter Disclosure of Information or any other document or information Information

obtained in the course of discharging his/ her duties for personal ends;  

  1. Public Servants shall not communicate with the media on issues related to work or official policy without due permission; 
  2. Official information will be released to the media by officials who have been authorized to do so according to the laid down procedures. 

IV Team Work 

Public Servants will strive to promote team work Team Work Team Work by offering help to co-employees whenever the need so arises. Team work will be achieved by public servants observing the following:- 

  1. Giving instructions which are clear and undistorted; 
  2. Giving due weight and consideration to official views submitted by fellow employees and subordinates; 
  3. Ensuring that subordinate’s clearly understand the scope of their work and encourage them 








to enhance their competence and skills; 

  1. Giving credit to an employee with outstanding performance and not seeking personal credit at the employee’s expense, 
  2. Avoiding malicious actions or words intended to ridicule either subordinates or superiors; 
  3. Reporting on his/her subordinates to be done fairly and without any fear. 
  1. Pursuing of Excellence in Service: 

Since the Public service is geared towards provision          Excellence in Excellence in of excellent services, public servants will do      Service the Service following:- 

    1. Strive to achieve the highest standards of performance; 
    2. If a member of a professional body (doctors, teachers, pharmacists, engineers, lawyers e.t.c.) then adhere to their respective professional Code of Conduct;
    3. Strive to acquire new knowledge and skills continuously and use them effectively; and 
    4. Recognize the need for training and strive to get such training. 


  1. Exercise Responsibility and Good Stewardship 

I. A Public Servant shall act within the boundaries of the authority and responsibilities delegated. In doing so he/she shall:- 

  1. make decisions in line with authorized standards and procedures; and 
  2. discharge duties effectively and be accountable for one's own actions. 



2. A Public Servant shall safeguard public funds Public and other properties of the public, entrusted property to

Public Property

him/her and shall ensure that no damage, loss, misappropriation occurs to the funds or public property; 

A Public Servant will use such resources for public use only. Public property includes office suppliers, telephones, computers, copiers, buildings and other properties purchased with Government funds or donated to the Government. Expenses met by Government or services such as telephone, water and electricity are also part of public property. 



  1. Transparency and Accountability 

I.  A Public Servant will adhere to and practice meritocratic principles in appointments, promotions and while delivering any service. He/she will be accountable both for actions and inactions through normal tiers of authority. 

2. i) A Public Servant shall conduct meetings for the purpose of promoting efficiency and shall not use meetings as a way of avoiding being responsible for the decision he/she is supposed to have made on her/ his own; 

  1. A Public Servant shall not engage in unofficial activities or projects during official hours or conduct such activities or projects within the office premises or by using public property; and 
  2. A Public Servant shall be ready to declare his/her property or that of his/her spouse when required to do so. 

Transparency and


3. A Public Servant shall be Loyal to the duly constituted Government of the day and will therefore, implement

Loyalty to the Government

policies and decisions given by the Minister or any other Government leader. 


  1. Discharge Duties with Integrity: 

1. A Public Servant shall not fear to abide to Laws, Regulations and Procedures when discharging his/her duties. 

Adherence to laws

2. A Public Servant shall not solicit, force or accept bribes from a person whom he/she is serving, has already served or will be serving either by doing so in person or by using another person. 


3. i) A Public Servant or any member of his/her family shall not receive presents in form of money, entertainments or any service from a person that may be regarded as geared towards compromising his/her integrity. 

  1. A Public Servant may accept or give nominal gifts such as pens, calendars and diaries in small amount. 
  2. A Public Servant will return to the donor any other gift or handle them over to the - government, in which case a receipt will be issued. 


4. A Public Servant shall perform his/her duties honestly and impartially to avoid circumstances that may lead to

Conflict of interest

conflict of interest. If conflict of interest arises he/she shall inform his/her superiors who will decide upon the best course of action to resolve it. 


5. A Public Servant shall not borrow to the extent of not being able to repay the debts as this will discredit the public service as well as affect his/her ability to make unbiased decisions. 

IX Political Neutrality: 



I. A Public Servant can participate in politics provided that when so doing he/she observes the following


  1. shall not conduct or engage oneself with political activities during official hours or at work premises; 
  2. shall not take part in political activity which will compromjse or be seen to compromise his/her loyalty to the Government; 
  3. shall not provide services with bias due to his/her political affiliation; 
  4. shall not pass information or documents availed through his/her position in the service to his/her political party. 



2. Although public servants have a right to  communicate with their political representatives they:- 

Political Influence


    1. shall not use such influence to intervene on matters affecting him/her which are in dispute between the government and him/her; 
    2. shall not use such influence for furthering personal ends which are not part of the Government policy. 

IX Conclusion: 

The Code of Ethics and Conduct has been issued pursuant to the Public Service Act. A breach of the Code will be dealt with under the Public Service Act, National Security Act, Prevention of Corruption Act or any other relevant law. 

On its part the government has the obligations to provide the following things:- 

  • Establish meritocratic principles and procedures to be used in appointments. promotions and in all other

service delivery activities; 

  • Establish a system, which specifies the authority. responsibilities and expected actions of each public servant which can then be assessed after a specific time; 
  • Effect an appraisal system, which will enable a public employee to participate in assessing his/her performance; 
  • Ensure that safe working conditions prevail which will enable the public employee to discharge his/her duties without undue risk or fear; and . 



  • Remunerate public servants on the basis of skills, responsibilities and working conditions. 

For efficient, effective and courteous delivery of services to the public all Public Servants must observe this Code.


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