23 August 2014

Tanzania: Kikwete Vows to End Herder, Farmers' Conflicts

PRESIDENT Jakaya Kikwete has vowed to find a lasting solution to the never-ending conflicts between farmers and pastoralists in Morogoro region.

He observed that the underlying causes of the conflicts is the fact that pastoralists take their herds to graze in people's farms, and called on them to stop that tendency.

"I am now going to get to the bottom of this issue. This wrangling between the two parties needs to come to an end," President Kikwete said during his weeklong tour of Morogoro region when addressing a public rally in Mgalegole village, Bwakira division.

President Kikwete made the remarks after receiving complaints about pastoralists allowing their animals to graze in people's farms wherever he stopped to greet people.

"In principle, this is a conflict that has no basis because both of these parties are dependent on each other. Pastoralists need food, ugali and rice from farmers. Farmers need meat from herders.

What is needed here is for herders to stop grazing their animals in other people's farms," he said. He also noted that another problem is that herders rely on children to graze herds and when they are stopped parents of the children start a fight with farmers, a trend that needs to be stopped.

President Kikwete started his tour yesterday by laying a foundation stone at the expansion of Kibaoni health centre in Ifakara town which is being upgraded to a district hospital and later handed over 278 desks to 17 primary schools of Mang'ula and Kidatu divisions that were sponsored by the Tanzania National Parks Authority (TANAPA).

Accompanied by Mama Salma Kikwete, the president then took a ride on the Tanzania Zambia Railway Authority (TAZARA) train to Kisaki in Morogoro district where he was welcomed by hundreds of people.

President Kikwete during the day launched the Duthumu water project which is sponsored by members of the Lions Clubs of Sweden and inaugurated surgery equipment of a health centre in the same area.

At Mtamba town, the president opened a new and modern market and held a public rally where he pledged that the government had started conducting a feasibility study for the construction of the Bingwa-Mvua road to tarmac level.


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