TANZANIA’S SENEGETI NATIONAL PARK TELLS RESIDENTS LIIVING ON PARK LAND TO LEAVE

MARA, TANZANIA-- Tanzania's world-renowned Serengeti National Park had told residents of Tarime District living within the park and the buffer zone to vacate the conserved areas before the expiry of the three-month deadline in October.

Chief Park Warden William Mwakilema said Wednesday that the villagers had been given a three month grace period to leave. The residents were issued with the notice in July this year and they are required to move out by October this year. We are calling upon them to voluntarily leave the areas, Mwakilema said in a telephone interview.

Some people have built houses within the park and the buffer zone area, something which compromises sustainable conservation of the country's second largest national park.

Minister for Tourism and Natural Resources Dr Hamisi Kigwangala, who visited the affected villages recently and issued the three-month notice to move out, said plans were made to introduce land use plans in all villages bordering the Serengeti as part of a drive to ease human-wildlife conflicts.

The initiative, he explained, would be supported by Tanzania National Parks (TANAPA) through the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Human Settlements Development.

Among other things, introduction of land use plans will help to identify and separate areas for conservation, grazing and farming activities and land use plans will be beneficial to people living near the parks, said Mwakilema.

Besides being among the country's leading tourist attractions, Serengeti National Park hosts a wide variety of beautiful wild animals and is a world heritage site. Conservationists stress that everything possible must be done to conserve and protect the park for future generations.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK