The politics of participation, benefit sharing and conflicts in the Burunge wildlife management area, in Babati district, Tanzania

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University of Dar es Salaam
This study used the Burunge Wildlife Management Area in the Tarangire-Manyara ecosystem as a case study to understand the politics of participation, benefit sharing and conflicts in community based wildlife conservation. Specifically, the study looked at the nature and extent of community participation and benefits in the Burunge WMA while noting the role of the Burunge WMA in shaping the natural resource use conflicts within the Tarangire-Manyara ecosystem. Through qualitative case study, the study relied mainly on in-depth interviews, focus group discussions and discourse analysis to critically asses the role of WMAs in improving natural resource governance in areas outside core protected areas. Findings from this study have generally revealed that community participation in community based wildlife management is complex and in many cases influenced by multiple factors at local and national level. The extent of community participation differs among different socio-economic groups and within and between villages. Despite the shortfalls and complaints on extent and the modalities of benefit sharing, this study has shown that the flow benefits are more tangible and reliable under the WMA concept as compared to the previous benefit sharing systems. The Burunge WMA has contributed substantially to the improvement of infrastructure in the ten villages forming the WMA. Benefits from the Burunge WMA, however, have created losers and gainers. Complaints over unfair, exploitative and oppressive benefit distribution systems were indicators of dissatisfication of different groups at village level. The Burunge WMA has benefited the conservation component more than other policy development objectives particulary poverty reduction and improvement of governance of wildlife resources in the study area. Land use conflicts in the study area can be divided into conflicts before and after the WMA, non WMA and WMA related conflicts. While conflicts before WMA included the historical human wildlife conflicts and village boundaries, conflicts after WMA include conflicts on the modalities of participation, complaints on the disatisification over the system of benefit sharing and access to the WMA lands. The combined effect of land use planning, effective enforcements of wildlife regulation through village collaboration, improved community involvement and benefits in the wildlife sector had contributed significantly to managing land use and human wildlife conflict in and outside the villages forming the Burunge WMA. On the other hand, the Burunge WMA has triggered and escalated new forms of conflicts among different actors involved in the management of the WMA. From the study one can conclude that despite the few shortcomings, the Burunge WMA has proved to be an important vehicle for conservation and improved natural resource governance within the Tarangire - Manyara ecosystem. The study recommends among many things that the government may need to review benefit sharing system at local and national level, build the capacity of the WMA and devolve more power to the WMA and village governments
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF SK575.T34K46)
Wildlife management, Citizen participation, Babati district, Burunge Wildlife Management Area, Tanzania
Kengera, Z. (2016) The politics of participation, benefit sharing and conflicts in the Burunge wildlife management area, in Babati district, Tanzania, Doctoral dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam