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Thursday, 7 November 2019

PREFERRED WATER OPTIONS FOR HUMAN USE IN SERENGETI PARK




A stakeholder’s workshop convened at Seronera in Serengeti National Park (SENAPA) on recently resolved that drilling of several water boreholes will be the best way to supply water to SENAPA facilities (including ranger posts).
The stakeholders also suggested investment in rain water harvesting technology in the park, which hosts numerous ranger posts and other tourist facilities.
The aim is to stop the constant human interference in the rivers used by wild animals at the park.
Thus, the new study is meant to develop an Integrated Water Management Programme (IWMP) for the park. 
 After the long day workshop with both local and foreign  stakeholders, Frankfurt Zoological Society (FZS) Project Leader, Mr Masegeri Tumbuya,  remarked: “Serengeti is a globally important resource, and water is a very important resource for sustainability of Serengeti ecology. Human beings can drill bore holes to get water, but wildlife cannot...:” 


SENAPA Chief Park Warden Senior Assistant Conservation Commissioner, Massana Mwishawa, said that conservation and protection of rivers used by wildlife should always be given top priority.
“We must have a strategic plan that ensures that the use of water does not affect the ecology of Serengeti and water flow within the ecosystem,”  Mwishawa said.  
The study recommended several options, but the stakeholders preferred the drilling of boreholes and investment in rain water harvesting. 
The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) said the idea to have IWMP will help to conserve and protect the park for many more years.

Mr Kessy, a water science expert at WWF Mara River Basin Office said: “We, as WWF, see taking of ground water for human consumption in the park as the best option.”


Mara River, which is shared by Tanzania and Kenya, is one of the major sources of water for wildlife. This includes the great annual wildebeest migration within the Serengeti- Masai Mara ecosystem.
“Having water boreholes will mean that water rivers will only be used for the wildlife,”  Mr. Kessy added.
Water is reportedly becoming a precious resource in Tanzania’s world-famous park, which attracts thousands of tourists from all over the world.
Besides wildebeest migration, the park is blessed with a variety of beautiful animals, such as giraffes, lions, leopards, elephants, buffalos and zebras.
Thus, the development of IWMP seeks to ensure that the Serengeti ecosystem does not face a shortage of water for wildlife and human use.


The plan is funded by the German government, through KfW Development Bank.
KfW Senior Project Manager, Dr Christian Ruck, commented that the study has come up with clear options that are not costly.Among other things, it has established available water sources, users and the existing gaps. The water options preferred are part of the solutions on the existing gaps.
Researchers from CESI, a Germany firm entrusted with conducting the study, told the stakeholders that the good news is that there is still enough water and rains in Serengeti.
The firm is now expected to conduct a detailed analysis on the preferred water options after the latest deliberations.  
Mr Nuhu Daniel said that another similar stakeholders workshop is set to be held early next year, according to the  Serengeti Ecosystem Conservation and Development Project Coordinator at SENAPA.



“We need to ensure that there is enough water for wildlife and tourists, and to ensure sustainability of Serengeti for another 60 years and beyond,” Mr Nuhu said.
Serengeti remains Tanzania’s top tourist attraction.
In June this year, Serengeti was voted the best park on the African continent for the year 2019 by World Travel Awards (WTA) .  

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