The 1,500km2 of the Loliondo game a home of Wildlife and the Masai will be a no go area as the government of Tanzania moves to say that the said land will be a corridor for wildlife, but impeccable sources reveal that the area was leased to a United Arab Emirates company known as Ortello Business Corporation. Ortello Business Corporation are known for Trophy Hunting .Trophy hunting is the selective hunting of wild game animals. Although parts of the slain animal may be kept as a hunting trophy or memorial (usually the skin, antlers and/or head), the carcass itself is sometimes used as food.
Although the government claims that the land is needed as a corridor for wildlife to move between the Serengeti National Park and the Maasai Mara National Park in Kenya, the area was leased to a safari hunting company, the Ortello Business Corporation (OBC) in 1992. The Maasai and their animals are being told to leave in the interests of conservation, while wealthy tourists are allowed to hunt the ‘big game’ that roams the area.
The Maasai have been resisting the takeover of their land by OBC for years. In 2009, villages were razed and livestock lost when they were removed from the land leased to OBC. The situation has festered for years and the government has announced this change as the ‘solution’. But the Maasai have lost so much of their land to conservation, hunting and tourism, they cannot afford to lose any more.
The Maasai and their animals are being told to leave in the interests of conservation, while wealthy tourists are allowed to hunt the ‘big game’ that roams the area.
Elite Access Media Group has sent a letter to the President of Tanzania urging him to ensure that the Maasai are not removed from, or denied access to, their lands and that a solution is found that enables the Maasai to continue their way of life whilst continuing to protect the ecosystem.
A Maasai man from one of the villages threatened with eviction told Elite Access Media Group today, ‘the people are strong, and ready to fight, to oppose this grabbing of their land.’
The Writer is an environmentalist activist and social critic.