Partnership is the overarching framework for development cooperation, but it has been criticized for furthering priorities of the North, rather than those of the South. This article discusses partnership in Tanzania with a special focus on policymaking to enhance rights and gender equality. The late 1990s have been described as an era when successful partnerships ensured laws friendly to women, but our analysis of policymaking in the 2010s shows that the process consumes far more time now and is harder to accomplish. We argue that this is because the current issues are more controversial, challenging cultural norms, and perhaps because the government realistically envisages a future without aid and is less willing to let partners influence its policies.