Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassan. Photo AFP/Getty Images
Hassan, 61, is the country's first female president who was sworn in after the death of predecessor John Magufuli in March this year.
Her reign was touted to usher in a more liberal stance from her predecessor's often repressive regime.
"The comment by president @SuluhuSamia on women footballers is a humiliation to all women," said forner MP Catherine Ruge, head of the women's arm of the opposition Chadema party.
The Presidency has not commented on the uproar following Hassan's remarks, however, senior players of Tanzania's national women's team 'Twiga Stars,' said at a press conference Thursday that she had been misinterpreted.
"There is a statement that the president had spoken about and people interpreted it in different ways," one player said.
"The president's statement gave us, the players, a lot of strength and encouragement, which made us to work very hard in sports. We have not seen anything with that statement."
Another player stated women footballers in the country are not bothered by their physical looks.
"We are beautiful, we are wonderful like other women and we also plan to be mothers someday. The question about appearance on our side is not something that really matters to us... The game we play needs a lot of strength. We will not stop doing exercising to build our muscles and strengths in order to reach our goals," the player, who was not named, said.
Maria Sarungi Tsehai, an activist and founder of the #ChangeTanzania movement, described President Hassan's remarks as "body-shaming," and "completely unacceptable and unexpected from a woman leader."
"This kind of soundbite from the president of the country, especially one who's a woman is easily pounced upon by sexist and misogynistic people," Tsehai told CNN.
"It's a very unfortunate remark, considering the fact that she (Hassan) has been celebrated in Africa as the first female president of Tanzania — overcoming stereotypes and the perceptions people have that a woman cannot be the leader of a country."
"For her to turn that around and use stereotyping against these women who are also breaking stereotypes...especially in a male-dominated sport like football, is very unfortunate," she added. - Nimi Princewill, CNN