Those who invade state forests risk legal action

THE nation was told last year that invaders had occupied a natural forest that is home to Hadzabe people in Singida Region.

The invaders were ordered by Mkalama District Commissioner (DC), Edward ole Lenga, to move out of the forest immediately. The DC ordered the invaders to move out of the conserved forest voluntarily short of which they would be arrested and prosecuted over illegal occupation of a conserved area.

The Hadzabe who still live in this forest have a lifestyle that is akin to that of wildlife. Mr Lenga said that the government will not tolerate seeing the invaders felling trees and burning the forest to clear patches of land for agriculture and livestock rearing.

This is bad news for the Hadzabe who subsist on wild fruits, tubers, leaves, honey and meat. But the year 2016 will also go down into the annals of history as a terrible one for livestock keepers and farmers. There were too many conflicts over land.

The livestock keepers needed land for grazing their cattle and the farmers wanted it for crop captivation. The government, under close supervision from President John Magufuli, resolved more than 690 land conflicts out of a whopping total of 1,378.

Land conflicts are a confounding scenario in this country. They cropped up anywhere nearly every day during the year. In urban centres, conflicts over land pitted developers against each other or the government.READ MORE

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