The role of joint forest management programme in the governance of the Mitarure forest reserve in Kilwa district, Tanzania

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University of Dar es Salaam
In joining the world’s efforts to minimise forest loss, the government of Tanzania adopted Joint Forest Management (JFM) programme to address forest management challenges. Despite the belief that JFM would improve forest governance, there is evidence of increased forest loss due to anthropogenic pressure. Also, the information on the forest status in the midst of forest JFM governance to guide the management is not well documented. The present study assessed the contribution of the JFM programme to the governance of the Mitarure Forest Reserve in Kilwa District. It specifically described the process followed during the establishment of the programme and assessed the local community perceptions and forest status following its implementation in the area. Qualitative, Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing methods were used to study the process, perception and status of the forest in the study area. The study found that the JFM has not been able to realize its expected contribution due to insufficient resources, willingness of the government, weak governance and poor coordination between authorities. The study also found that, communities have remained positive since the inception of the JFM in the area but their participation in decision making and conservation activities have been minimal due to limited direct benefits. Remote sensing data showed a significant forest loss (t=3.56, p=0.00045) of about 37,355.7 ha between 2004 and 2015, due to increased anthropogenic pressures. The study suggests that, legal measures should be tightened to minimize anthropogenic pressure and allow forest recovery. Also conservation education should be continuously provided to the forest adjacent communities to raise awareness.
Available in print form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF SD414.T34M738)
Kilwa, Mitarure, forest management programme, Tanzania
Msuya, S.A. (2017) The role of joint forest management programme in the governance of the Mitarure forest reserve in Kilwa district, Tanzania. Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam.