Tanzania: Jumbos Invade Butiama, Destroy Crops


By Mugini Jacob, Tanzania Daily News

Date Published
Mara — DOZENS of rampaging elephants migrating from Serengeti have entered Butiama District, causing massive destruction on crops and panic to villagers.

The elephants have also seriously wounded a resident in the area, according to Butiama District Commissioner (DC), Ms Angelina Mabula.

Game officials were until Wednesday afternoon struggling to remove the jumbos from villagers’ fields and residential areas.

They had managed to return the elephants to Serengeti National Park (SENAPA) early this week.

“Again, I have just got a report that about seven elephants invaded the villages today and officials are working around to return them to the park,” Ms Angelina told the ‘Daily News’ over the phone on Wednesday afternoon.

She confirmed that one person has been hospitalised and is in critical condition after being seriously wounded by the rampaging jumbos.

On Monday, the Butiama DC was forced to rush to the affected areas and urged the villagers to stay calm as well as refraining from making things that could trigger dangerous reactions from the animals.

Accompanied by armed police officers, the DC also warned the villagers against harming the stray elephants.

“It seems the elephants are following their former routes and what is needed is education to our people. They want to kill elephants in order to get bush meat. This is very risky,” she said.

The elephants have of late killed civilians, livestock and destroyed crops in many parts of Serengeti District.

Leaders from the affected districts are appealing for immediate intervention from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Tourism.

Fear is growing that if the trend remains unchecked, victims will end up hating conservation activities, according to local leaders in Serengeti District.

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