Wildlife and environmentalists have called upon the government to open more ‘doors’ for local people to chip-in the fight against senseless killings of innocent wild animals in Tanzania.
They aired their views in a televised dialogue on the threat posed by poaching and illegal timber harvesting in the Tanzania’s natural resources.
Robert Nyantiga a member of Environmental Network (MANET) decried over low level of people’s participation in managing country’s resources, saying: “It is so astonishing to see local people who are close to forests and game reserves and national parks are not benefiting from the resources they have been conserving for years.”
“This is a serious challenge. We have check-points, and the revenue collected at those gates doesn’t go back to the local communities, so at the end of the day, they feel like they have nothing to lose. Part of the money was supposed to go back to villagers where they can build either dispensary or health center or school,” said Isaya Ole Severre from Arusha and a member of MANET.
“We have policies and laws in place, but, to what extent do our people know? There is a need to educate them. People are unaware about their responsibilities in this fight against poaching and illegal timber harvesting,” he said.
An environmental partner, Rastan Mziwanda, said natural resources are for all Tanzanians, hence there is a need for active participation of all people irrespective of their socio-economic backgrounds.
“We have good policies and laws, but this alone cannot save our wildlife and forest resources. We need to involve as more people as we can.” More....