GOVERNMENT should not be left alone to fight poachers, rather joint efforts are needed from the public as well, a Member of Parliament has advised.
The statement was made when the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Amb. Khamis Kagasheki threw in the towel last week, saying government alone cannot tackle the menace.
Busega MP, Dr Titus Kamani said that the rate at which people are nabbed with elephant tusks and rhino horns is alarming and more efforts are needed to curb the malice. Dr Kamani, whose constituency borders a national park in Simiyu Region said cooperation is required to win this war.
“If the situation continues unabated there will be a far-reaching economical impact to our nation since tourists may stop coming as they are attracted by these large mammoth animals,” Dr Kamani, who is a livestock and wildlife expert said.
According to him, about 100 elephants are poached each year, while statistics show that the country remains with around 80,000 elephants and the population is thinning very fast due to greedy people.
Rhinos and elephants are major tourist attractions and the country needs every one to protect these species not only for the coming generations but to contribute to the national coffers.
He said the problem was not only in Tanzania but in South Africa as well, where 400 elephants are killed every year. The MP said the killing of elephants is fuelled by the high demand from traders in Hong Kong and China who use the tusks for decorative purposes.
In a bid to sensitise ‘wananchi’ on joining hands, the MP said, he will use the upcoming Serengeti Marathon to take place in his constituency early December, this year. The event is expected to attract over 100 runners and 3,000 people from all walks of life.
Tanzania Daily News, 18 August 2013
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