Tanzania Tourism activist takes war to the US

A Tanzanian tourism and conservation campaigner is to take the war against poaching to the US as part of efforts to sensitise the international community on the dangers of ivory trade to fragile economies.

Several companies have teamed up to support 53-year -old Robert Zangi to attend an international conference on poaching to be hosted by Northern Colorado University in Denver, the US, from April 9.

Mr Zangi who has promoted tourism activities for nearly a decade now under the Tanzania Tourism Board umbrella will use the opportunity while in the US to bring the attention of the US on the importance of helping Africa to save the threatened elephants and in turn save the Tanzania tourism sector.

“The US is an important market to raise the profile against poaching and bring out the true picture of the cost of elephant killings and related businesses around the world,” he told The Citizen yesterday. Mr Zangi said he was invited by the university because of his work to promote tourism between Tanzania and US since 2006. “If we don’t stop the elephant killing now we will not have anything to sell as an attraction,” he said.

Tanzania safari and tourism businesses have suffered set backs due to the bad publicity from all the poaching going on in various national parks around the country. The main victims of this horrendous act are the elephants that are being poached for ivory. the rhinos too are victims of poaching.

More and more animals are kileed everyday for the treasure that is ivoryMeanwhile, six people who are suspected to be poachers were arrested at Kiyombo Village of Manyoni District, Singida Region in connection with a consignment of 55 elephant tusks weighing 170 kilogrammes.

The tusks were extracted from 26 innocent elephants, killed by people who are suspected to be poachers on Monday morning.
Briefing reporters in Arusha, the Minister for Natural Resources and Tourism, Lazaro
Nyalandu said: “Poachers were arrested some hours after midnight, Monday morning and at the moment, they are being held at the Manyoni Police Station.”
According to Nyalandu, the suspects were also found with a military weapon; a Sub-Machine gun with three magazines and there are reports that the six had been on jumbo killing spree in the Rungwa and Kizigo, game reserves located in Manyoni.
The development comes at a time when the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism is finalising its quarterly report on poaching incidents in Tanzania for the first three months of this year. The report will be tabled in Arusha in the course of this week.
In a bid to protect Tourism in Tanzania, the  ministry will also launch the second phase of the ‘National anti-poaching machinery,’ (Operation Tokomeza Majangili – II) in line with the country’s war against illegal wildlife hunting and ivory trading.
“Tanzania has joined the global war on ivory trading. The initiative involves China, which is a lucrative outlet for the smuggled tusks, the United Nations and the International Police (INTERPOL),” Nyalandu revealed.