‘I will never forget in all my life, the help Protimos gave us, and I hope, will continue to offer us… I find it hard to comprehend that people from so far away can be so kind and so caring about us, a small village in Tanzania’ – Hoseni Salehe Akida, Elected Chairman of Uvinje
Following an investigation initiated with the help of Protimos, Tanzania’s Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance has held the involuntary resettlement of Uvinje villagers by the Tanzania National Park Authority (TANAPA) to be unconstitutional.
Tanzania National Park Authority (TANAPA) had incorrectly claimed that the Uvinje people’s ancestral homeland was part of the Saadani National Park and so relocation was necessary. The Commission, however, ruled that TANAPA’s redrawn map fails to take into account the original boundaries agreed between the Tanzanian government and the Uvinje people in the 1970s. Moreover, the Uvinje villagers did not participate in any decision to expand the boundaries of the Park, as required by law.
The Commission’s Opinion is a crucial victory in the fight to protect the land rights of the Uvinje villagers. The next step is to ensure that the correct Park boundaries are officially demarcated. The Protimos sponsored barrister is taking steps to ensure that a ruling commission has additional strength from a court order. The Uvinje legal team will also ensure that the Uvinje people have a voice in court if TANAPA try to reclaim the land in the future.
Please see the Commission for Human Rights and Good Governance recommendations below.
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