Liwale District relocates pastoralists, farmers from conservation area

AUTHORITIES in Liwale District have managed to relocate pastoralists and farmers from Magingo Wildlife Conservation Area.

The exercise to relocate them on Friday last week was led by District Commissioner, Mr Goodluck Mlinga in collaboration with the district security committee.

This comes after the meeting held in May this year in which it was agreed that human activities in the reserved area be stopped in efforts to protect wild animals in their habitat.

“I want all of you to move out of the conservation area as we agreed, because now I see you have built your houses and keep on with agricultural activities, which is against what we agreed in the last meeting,” Mr Mlinga told those who still remained at the area.

He wondered why those villagers kept on developing their settlements, as if they were allowed to stay at the conservation area, and the worst thing they had set up traps to catch wild animals.

“We have seen traps when we were searching in those houses, we have also found antelope horns, which means some of dwellers are poachers, which is against the laws and regulations of the country,” added Mr Mlinga.

He argued that grazing at the conservation area caused wild animals to shift to other areas, distract biodiversity and caused environmental pollution.

DC Mlinga urged all farmers and pastoralists to move out of the Magingo reservation areas as soon as possible and go to designated areas, allocated for pastoralism and farming activities in the district, respectively, failure of which they will face legal measures.

District Wildlife Officer, Mr Shigela Jilada, said it was good for those villagers to vacate, so as the government could get investors and tourists.

“I congratulate pastoralists and farmers who had agreed to vacate the Magingo conservation area, because this will help to maintain the area easily,” he added.

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