Tanzania: Wildlife Team Dispatched to Rumanyika-Karagwe Park

A team consisting of wildlife officials has been dispatched to Rumanyika-Karagwe National Park to control stray elephants that have continued to cause havoc in the area.

A Natural Resources Officer at the Karagwe District Council, Mr Rama Maselle told the "Daily News" over the telephone that the jumbos had destroyed about ten hectares of crops and killed three people, adding that the wildlife team was keen to ensure that the jumbos are safely returned to the Burigi-Chato National Park.

"It is the season of mangoes and everybody is more than delighted to enjoy the 'King of fruits'. Count elephants in too, beause an elephant enjoys the mangoes to his heart's content. However, the Wildlife team is keen to ensure that the jumbos are safely returned to the Burigi-Chato National Park," he said.

Mr Maselle, however, explained that one of the challenges is that humans have invaded their habitat which sometimes cause conflicts between humans and the jumbos.

Kagera Regional Police Commander (RPC), Revocatus Malimi explained that on January 3 this year, three people of the same family were killed by a stray elephant.

He named the deceased as Fredy Muhile (40), his wife Aneth and their daughter Angela Fredy, who was aged one and half years old, all residents of Mshabaijulu village, in Karagwe District.

On January 3rd, this year at around 5.45 p.m. Aneth who was carrying her baby on her back went to collect water from a nearby water well at Block No. 5 near Rumanyika-Karagwe National Park.

On the way she met a villager identified as Juma Rashid (18), who was running from the opposite direction and warned her that he was being chased by a stray elephant.

She turned and started running for her life, but shortly the elephant caught up with her, injuring her and her baby seriously.

Upon being informed on the incident, Fredy Muhile, her husband, hurriedly went to rescue his wife, but he was crushed to death by the irate animal.

Mr Malimi said Aneth and the baby girl were rushed to the nearby Nyakahanga hospital but they died that same night. Rashid was also admitted to the hospital but in stable condition.

He strongly warned people living near national parks to be careful, and if possible move away to safer areas.

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