Arusha — The Ngurudoto and Meru forests have been elevated to become part of the Arusha National Park (ANAPA) extending the park area from 405 to 542 square kilometres.
Senior Park Warden of ANAPA, Mr. Erastus Lufungulo confirmed this last week when addressing leaders of Arumeru District.
Mr. Lufungulo said elevating the forest areas to national park status would help conserve both the forest, water sources and the environment in general. Expansion of the park is
gradually being done after close consultations with all stakeholders.
Mr. Lufungulo explained that after the expansion of the Park, the communities in the neighbourhood would benefit from it and will be committed to protect the wildlife.
Following the expansion, the Government Revenue is expected to increase due to expanded tourist attractions. From 1999 to 2006 the number of tourists who visited ANAPA substantially increased . In 1999 the number of tourists was 22,614 and the income generated was Shs. 543,901,617 while in 2005 the number of tourists rose to 42,355 earning the nation about Shs1.2 billion.
The warden said one of the projects which will be undertaken is the construction of Kismiri Juu Road on the slopes of Mount Meru.