Relocation of people from Ngorongoro gathers pace
- Deputy Conservation Commissioner (DCC) of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority (NCAA), Dr Christopher Timbuka, said yesterday that 757 households with 4,344 people have voluntarily signed for the relocation so far.
Dar es Salaam. The relocation of people from the famous Ngorongoro Conservation Area is gathering pace with more families reported to have registered for leaving to Msomera village in the Handeni District in Tanga.
Deputy Conservation Commissioner (DCC) of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority (NCAA), Dr Christopher Timbuka, said yesterday that 757 households with 4,344 people have voluntarily signed for the relocation so far.
“The number of households that are currently registering to relocate from Ngorongoro is huge and satisfying compared to our manpower. We have the funds, but cannot construct all required houses at once, that is why we are relocating people in phases and moving according to the budget,” he told reporters during a briefing broadcast live from Dodoma. Last month, Arusha regional commissioner John Mongella was quoted as saying that some 296 families had registered for the move to Handeni where the government has earmarked 400,000 acres of land for relocated Maasai households. Tanzania has historically allowed indigenous communities such as the Maasai to live within some national parks.
But, Dr Timbuka said the number of humans living in Ngorongoro has shot up from 8,000 in 1959 to more than 110,000 in 2021.
The livestock population has also grown even more quickly, from around 260,000 head in 2017 to over one million today.
According to Dr Timbuka, athough people might think it has taken too long to relocate families but it is not, it is just that the exercise involves various authorities before relocating people. “Since the exercise started to voluntarily register people, a total number of 757 households have registered, within two months. This number is too big and this means families are willing to evacuate.”
Dr Timbuka noted that they will continue to provide awareness so that more families could be willing to register to and relocate from Ngorongoro to Msomera village.
Explaining how much the relocation would cost, Dr Timbuka said Ngorongoro had 22,000 households which will need a total of Sh700 billion to relocate them.
According to him, so far about 100 houses in Msomera have been constructed and the other 400 will be finalized soon.
He said the money needed to relocate the households sound a lot but the area will be preserved in terms of ecology and has the potential to generate more money through tourism activities.