TANZANIA Wildlife Research Institute (TAWIRI) has immediately swung into action after President Samia Suluhu Hassan issued directives, requiring the institute to resolve cases of elephants invading villages and destroying properties.
The Head of State issued the directives on Thursday while addressing a public rally at Ilulu grounds in Lindi Region during the commemoration of World AIDS Day.
She was responding to concerns raised by Lindi Regional Commissioner Ms Zainab Telack, on incidences of elephants that have been invading human habitats and destroying crops.
However, Dr Samia blamed human activities in reserved areas, the practices that have been denying jumbos their freedom to graze in their natural pastures, forcing them to move from their natural habitats to areas inhabited by human beings.
Receiving a report on implementation of the directives yesterday from TAWIRI Director General Dr Elbate Mjingo at Nachingwea Airport in Lindi Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa said he was impressed with the swift measures taken to implement the president’s directives.
He said that when President Samia addressed Lindi residents during the commemoration of World AIDS Day, she directed the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism to use its experts to implement the directives of controlling jumbos that were invading villages and destroying crops in Nachingwea, Liwale and Ruangwa in the region.
TAWIRI DG told the premier that they had already identified four groups of elephants, three of which were in Nachingwea District and one in Liwale District.
“Honorable Prime Minister, the first group has 50 elephants while the second one consists of 20 of them and the third has five elephants. We have fitted the first group with GPS collars to track their movements… the remaining groups will be fitted with the devices today (yesterday),” he said.
In a related development, the PM directed defence and security committees in the districts to raise awareness on the importance of refraining from conducting human activities in the reserved areas in order to avoid the jumbos to invade their habitats and crops.
“You should inform them on all necessary precautions regularly in order to go in line with the control of the wild animals,” Majaliwa said.
In her speech, President Samia also directed the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism to work with authorities in Lindi Region to put in place proper land use in order to prevent encroachment by farmers and livestock keepers in areas, which are reserved for wild animals.