How govt deals with stubborn crocodiles

DODOMA: THE government has responded to the legislators’ outcry with regard to the crocodiles that have been wreaking havoc in various parts of the country, saying two measures can be instituted to deal with the menace.

According to the Deputy Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Mr Danstan Kitandula, one of the measures may involve conducting tourist hunting in areas earmarked to be harbouring excessive number of the dangerous alligators.

Mr Kitandula said the ministry has also been harvesting the stubborn alligators whenever it receives information on the presence of the killer crocodiles in a particular spot.

The deputy minister spoke of the measures when responding to the question posed by Erick Shigongo (CCM-Buchosa) who sought the government position on the plan to fence water drawing points in all spots where people have been fetching water in all water bodies.

According to Mr Shigongo, killer crocodiles have been claiming lives of Tanzanians in some water bodies, including Lake Victoria that extends up to Buchosa.

The deputy minister said the ministry is constructing demonstration water points in various points near water bodies as part of the government efforts to save individuals from the danger posed by killer crocodiles.

Speaking with evidence on the government resolve, Mr Kitandula said the government built two water points in Buchosa in Mwanza Region at the cost of 60.47m/-.

The water drawing points are located at Kanyala and Izindabo villages at Buchosa Division.

The deputy minister directed district councils to construct water fetching points in areas infested with killer alligators.

Lucy Mayenga (CCM- Special Seats) asked the government to consider moving crocs from one point to another, as part of the measures to deal with the problem.

She said areas spotted to be harbouring excessive number of alligators can be assessed after which a decision can be made to move them to other locations.

Responding to Ms Mayenga’s idea, the deputy minister said the proposal will be worked on to determine its feasibility.

Vincent Mbogo (CCM- Nkasi North) also raised similar complaint, saying his voters have been facing the problem from crocs from Lake Tanganyika.

Vita Kawawa ( CCM- Namtumbo) attracted an attention of the House when he narrated how his grandfather-Mzee Mfaume Kawawa- in 1920s, working as a game warden and with primitive tools and tactics, managed to deal with stubborn elephants in southern regions.

He expressed his disappointment at how wildlife officers today, despite the advancement of technology, are failing to deal with the menace caused by stubborn elephants.

The outcry regarding crocs and jumbos ravaging lives of people appears now to be requiring deliberate efforts to address it.

The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), which is famous for its Red List that characterises the conservation status of various species, suggests that crocodilians strike out at human beings for four reasons, including looking for food, defending their territory, defending their young, or just attacking another species—such as a dog, a cat, or another domesticated animal—that just happen to be near a person at the time.

But, when elephants feel threatened—or come across a barrier on their path toward food and water sources—they can injure or kill people and destroy homes and crops.

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