(Xinhua) -- A herd of 150 elephants
stormed into villages in northwest Tanzania, destroying 160
acres of food and cash crops, authorities confirmed Friday.
The elephants were strays from Serengeti National Park, a UNESCO
World Heritage Site as big as Northern Ireland.
Local media reports said villages most affected by the
jumbos’ invasion were those in Itilima District, Simiyu Region.
According to the reports, for the past three days, the
elephants were roaming around locals’ farms destroying crops
such as maize, sorghum and cotton.
"I had three acres of maize, which have been destroyed by the
"I am not sure of what I am going to feed my family this
year," complained Nila Delefa, a farmer in the area.
"I have never seen such large group of elephants in my life.
"Our efforts to scare them away failed as the wild animals
were charging to us.
"So, everyone in the village ran away," Derefa said.
He said that the first group of elephants landed into the
area on Wednesday.
Another villager Shigilu Mlashi described the destruction as
‘devastating’, as the situation is likely to pose security
Ndulu Mtegwa, ward councilor in the area, said that six
villagers have been affected by the elephants’ invasion.
He described the situation as worrisome as people in the area
have sleepless nights due to elephant invasion.
Benson Kilangi, Itilima District Commissioner, confirmed the
"We’re aware of the new challenge and we’ve dispatched
wildlife officers into the affected areas, to chase away the
elephants to the national park," Kilangi said.
Tanzania in drive to
replenish fish stock in Lake Tanganyika
ARUSHA, Tanzania (Xinhua) --
Tanzania has embarked on a new project
geared to replenish the dwindling fish stock in Lake
Tanganyika—the world’s second deepest freshwater body, officials
Aquaculture experts have already landed on the lake shores in
western Tanzania’s district of Kalambo where they are planning
to establish fish fingerling ponds.
Medadi Hosea, Tanzania’s fisheries officer on the shores of
Lake Tanganyika said that the move is meant to restore the lost
glory of fish stock in the lake which has more than 200 fish
The official said that the project came after discovering
that fish stock in the lake has declined in the lake, which is
being shared by Tanzania, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the
Congo and Zambia.
"This situation is bad. Some of the fishermen have abandoned
fishing gears and ventured into other economic activities as
fish has plummeted in number," said Hosea.
Julith Binyura, Kalambo district Commissioner said that 60
percent of population along Lake Tanganyika shores depends on
fishing for their livelihood.
"That’s why the government is putting much of its efforts in
addressing the shocking situation."
Frank Schalos, Kalambo District’s Administrative Secretary
also called upon the youth to establish groups of
entrepreneurship so that government can provide loans through
the groups as it cannot lend money to individuals.
A new study finds that a decrease in fishery production in
one of the largest freshwater lakes on Earth is a consequence of
human-caused climate change rather than just overfishing.
The research, published in Proceedings of the National
Academy of Sciences, used sediment cores from the bottom of Lake
Tanganyika in southeast Africa to create a 1,500-year record of
temperature in the lake, as well as a record of animal fossil
abundances over time.
The study found that as the temperature in the lake
increased—with a substantial spike in the industrial period of
the last 150 years—the abundance of fossil fish, mollusks, and
other organisms decreased.
The decline in fish fossils began well before commercial
fishing in the lake intensified in the mid-20th century,
suggesting climate change is playing a substantial role in the
lake’s decreased production.
The findings suggest that the effects of climate-related
ecological change should be taken into account when determining
catch limits and other sustainable management measures.
The study also raises concern about how other tropical
freshwater lakes might be affected by warming climate.
Lake Tanganyika is the largest and oldest rift lake in Africa
and one of the largest lakes on Earth.
At about 700 km long, 50 km wide and 1.5 km deep, it contains
roughly 15 percent of all of the fresh water at the Earth’s
It is also one of the most biologically diverse lakes on
It holds over 300 species of fish, many of which are endemic
to Lake Tanganyika, as well as hundreds of endemic species of
snails, shrimp, crabs and other crustaceans.
Tanzania launches fund to
address environmental issues
DAR ES SALAAM (Xinhua) --
The government of Tanzania has launched the
National Environmental Conservation Fund aimed at addressing
environmental issues, including climate change which is sending
shockwaves to the country.
January Makamba, the east African nation’s Minister of State
in the Vice President’s Office responsible for Environment, said
the fund has been in preparation for the past 12 years.
"The fund will focus on supporting organizations and
activities related to environment conservation in ensuring
there’s a mitigation of environmental problems affecting the
country," said Makamba.
Makamba said since environment issues were being seriously
addressed across the world, it was high time Tanzania formed a
special fund dedicated to financing environmental issues.
He said the government, environment stakeholders and experts
could work collectively toward an environmentally friendly
The new fund already has a board of sponsors led by the Chief
Executive Officer of Infotech Investment Group Ally Mufuruki who
was appointed recently by President John Magufuli.
Mufuruki said the fund will be using about 500,000 US dollars
annually on its activities to ensure that the set targets were
met and more efforts were done to conserve the environment.
Mufuruki said more efforts will be placed in creating
intensive awareness to the public concerning environmental
conservation as well as their role in preserving and being
accountable for cleanness and their environment at large.
"The biggest challenge is that most people don’t know the
extent in which they individually contribute to environment
destruction, which makes it difficult to engage them in
conservation activities," he said.
appoints new Chief of Defence Force
DAR ES SALAAM (Xinhua) --
Tanzanian Commander-In-Chief of Armed Forces,
President John Magufuli on Thursday appointed General Venance
Mabeyo the east African nation’s new Chief of Defence Forces (CDF).
A terse statement by the Directorate of Presidential
Communication at State House in the commercial capital Dar es
Salaam said Mabeyo replaced outgoing CDF General Davis
Before the new appointment Magufuli promoted Mabeyo from
Lieutenant General to General, said the statement.
The statement said Mabeyo replaced Mwamunyange after the
latter has reached his statutory retirement.
At the same time, President Magufuli appointed Lieutenant
General James Mwakibolwa new Chief of Staff of the Tanzania
People’s Defence Forces (TPDF).