The big number of elephant tusks and other trophies impounded by game rangers across controlled parks and reserves in the country is really sickening.
It shows that the poachers and their cohorts in the game management machinery are very much at work in their warped pursuit of riches at the expense of the state-funded conservation effort.
On a recent tour of Masasi, Natural Resources and Tourism Minister Khamis Kagasheki got an insight into the extent of the destruction caused by poachers in the game controlled areas in the district.
He was shown part of a consignment of 89 elephant tusks valued at 1.1bn/- that were impounded during a recent antipoaching operation - eighty nine tusks for crying out loud!
One shudders to just imagine that the 89-tusk haul was just a tip in the iceberg considering the unpalatable fact that Masasi is just one affected area as poaching has not spared game controlled areas anywhere in the country.
The speed and ferocity at which our wildlife is being decimated in the national parks and game reserves is cause for worry for all the parties concerned, including the general public.
Millions of shillings in foreign exchange terms are received annually as thousands of tourists from all parts of the world come calling to sample the country's breathtaking game parks, Africa's 'rooftop', Mount Kilimanjaro, and hundreds of miles of silversanded Indian Ocean beaches.
The poaching menace is very much on judging from the reports coming in from the parks and game reserves and the periodical arrests made by the anti-poaching units, whose task is somewhat trickier given the vastness of the game land and the thickly-vegetated terrain. More....