Tanzania: Ngorongoro Eviction Victims Now Pondering Court Option

Dar es Salaam — Residents from 14 villages in Ngorongoro are considering going to court to challenge their eviction in Loliondo division.

The Tanzania Human Rights Defenders Coalition (THRDC) national coordinator, Onesmo Olengurumwa told The Citizen in a telephone interview that the residents were consulting their lawyer before moving to the court to challenge the ongoing eviction.

According to Mr Olengurumwa, who is the victims' legal adviser, the villagers have already held a meeting with the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance (CHRGG) to express their concerns.

The villagers, who face evictions are from Arash, Texambu, Lolosokoni, Kiritaro, Oleipiri, Maloni, Oleirini, Piaya, Oleseki and Losoito.

The government issued a public notice on August 5, this year demanding the residents to vacate their houses.

But, yesterday a delegation of representatives from Ngorongoro told a press conference that justice was not accorded to the 14 villages, seeking Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa's intervention.

Describing the agony facing the residents, they said 19 people have been arrested as of Wednesday and 11 others seriously injured by rangers who are accused of using live bullets in the operation and that over 5,800 households have been vandalized, leaving more than 20,000 people homeless.

"About 1,200 livestock have been seized by the authorities, some have died of hunger and congestion while over 133 heads of cattle and 281 sheep and goats are nowhere to be found," said Mr Kipilangati Kaura.

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