The government has acquired two choppers and a speed boat in its effort to speed up its campaign against poaching, Natural Resources and Tourism minister Lazaro Nyalandu has said.
Speaking at the launch of the Pansiansi Wildlife Training Institute Advisory Board yesterday, Nyalandu, said that the government has also set aside 5bn/- to train wildlife personnel to ensure that poaching is brought to an end.
In tandem with the acquisition of speed boats and helicopters, he said, the government is conducting training to game wardens with a view to equipping them with necessary skills to see that poachers are put on check.
“Our boys are currently undergoing training to that effect. With new equipment and trained staff in place even poachers who would take sanctuary in water bodies will be unearthed,” he said, calling on spouses to report their partners who take part in the crime.
Nyalandu called on the management of the Pansiansi Wildlife Training Institute to ensure that the institute becomes a centre of excellence by producing quality products in the wildlife sector.
He appealed to students from the institute to become good ambassadors of Pansiansi by working hard and diligently when they finish they studies.
Pansiansi Wildlife Training Institute is the only organisation in the country which offers paramilitary training to game wardens.
Chairman of the inaugurated Advisory Board Cuthbert Nahonyo appealed to the government to recruit more staff for the institute which was established in 1966.
In a related development, on May 2 this year, President Jakaya Kikwete announced the formation of a Commission of Inquiry on what occurred during the ill-fated anti poaching campaign known as ‘Operation Tokomeza’.
A statement released by Chief Secretary Ombeni Sefue said that the President had formed the commission on the basis of Chapter 32 article (3) of the Laws on Enquiries.
The President has appointed retired Judge Stephen Ihema and retired Judge Vincent Lyimo as among its commissioners, along with Frederick Manyanda, a state attorney to be secretary to the commission.
The President noticeably appointed retired principal judge and former ambassador, Hamisi Msumi, as chairman of the commission of inquiry, the statement noted.
The appointments took effect May 2, this year whereby the tasks of the commission were given as to inquire and set out how the operation was conducted.
The team shall also inquire into and set out if laws, regulations, procedures and terms of reference of the operation were followed during its implemention, Ambassador Sefue said.
Similarly, it will seek to find out if anyone among those implementing the operation contravened the law, procedures and terms of reference in the course of those actions.
It will also inquire and clarify if any group of people contravened the law during the implementation of Operation Tokomeza, and if measures taken on them or their properties were appropriate.
Furthermore, it is also charged with recommending measures which need to be taken against anyone who will be found to have contravened the laws, procedures and terms of reference of that operation, as well as proposing other matters to be considered and taken into account in preparing and implementing similar operations in future to forestall gaps.
The formation of the commission of inquiry was a follow up to the president’s promise in that regard when he addressed the National Assembly on November 18, last year, the statement added.
The new measures bring to fresh memory an emotionally charged session in Parliament in Dodoma last November, when MPs and the general public witnessed a unique parliamentary session where party divides were not visible.