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Tanzania: Tanzania Not Planning Hunting Ban


The government has made it clear there are no plans to suspend sports hunting in the country as demanded by conservationists.

Dr. Adelhelm Meru, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism was reacting to proposals last week by the Lusaka Agreement Task Force (LATF).

The proposals ask that African nations that allow hunting should consider suspending the business, pending the establishment of sustainable rules of the game.

The LATF Director, Bonaventure Ebayi, told a four-day Post Operation Cobra III Review and Training Workshop in Arusha, sports hunting fuelled wildlife poaching and smuggling.

However Dr. Meru said approved hunting has helped to improve wildlife conservation and balance the ecosystem, as opposed to the dwindling numbers of wildlife species. "History has shown us that there has at no time been poaching in hunting blocks managed by hunting operators in Tanzania," Meru said.

"If hunting tourism is suspended instead of having legal hunting there will be illegal hunting," he said.

Meru said hunting of wildlife, particularly of endangered species like elephants, was done on quota based on guidelines from the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), an international treaty to protect wildlife against overexploitation, and to prevent international trade from endangered species.

Eric Pasanisi, the Chair of the Tanzania Hunting Operators Association (Tahoa), said the suspension will be harmful to wildlife conservation in the country since 65% of conservation funds were derived from tourist hunting.

"Abandoning tourist hunting blocks will all to exposing our wildlife to poachers," Pasanisi.

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