Q&A – 8 January 2024

Hunting lions for recreational purposes

I am an Englishman with a passion for trophy hunting. I am looking forward to going on a hunting safari in Tanzania for my holidays next year. A tour operator based in the United Kingdom suggested I check if Tanzanian law allows hunting for lions? Please guide me on this.

It is important that tourists make themselves aware of local laws in their country of destination to avoid getting into trouble. Wildlife is protected under international and national laws of many countries. In Tanzania wildlife hunting is regulated by the Wildlife Conservation Act and the Wildlife Conservation (Tourist Hunting) Regulations, as part of the government’s effort to promote responsible hunting.

The Minister responsible for Tourism and the Tanzania Wildlife Management Authority (TAWA) control all activities related to hunting. Hunting safaris are permitted in hunting blocks located in game reserves, game-controlled areas, wildlife open areas and wildlife management areas by licensed hunting companies. Hunting is controlled by quota issued annually by the quota allocation advisory committee. Beware that you cannot hunt any type of wild animal. There are animals that cannot be hunted in Tanzania and they include Elephants, Rhinos and Giraffes to mention a few, but you can hunt lions.

More importantly, certain restrictions apply even when a wild animal can be hunted. These include age of the animal, gender of the animal, type of hunting equipment as well as weapons used in hunting. The hunting season in Tanzania begins from 1st July to 31st December and we suggest you organise your safari around this time.

An approved Hunting company is supposed to apply for a hunting permit on behalf of their client at TAWA designated offices. The application is then reviewed and permits are issued when authorities are satisfied that all conditions have been met. It is important to have your documentation in order including licenses and permits from the relevant authorities before you hunt. You will also need to be accompanied by a licensed professional hunter who has been approved by the Minister during the hunt. It is possible that you will also have to seek approval of local leaders in certain designated hunting areas even when you have the requisite permits. Also note failure to comply with the requirements of the law amounts to offences which may subject a tourist to penalties or even imprisonment. We hope you enjoy your hunting safari in Tanzania.

Failure to pay school fees and right to education

They say January is the longest month of the year due to financial obligations facing parents. This is indeed true, my children were recently dismissed from school because I failed to pay school fees. I know children have a right to education and I think schools should consider alternative solutions before resorting to dismissal. My children are eager learners, this dismissal could have a detrimental impact on their academic progress and educational journey. Can I force the school to take them back based on the right to education?
PP, Dar

We are sorry to hear about the dismissal of your children from school. it is true children have a right to education which is recognised and protected under international and national laws of many countries. In Tanzania, the Government has enacted various laws that protect a child’s right to education including the Constitution, the Law of the Child Act, the National Education Act and its Regulations. Moreover, public schools offer free education in an effort to ensure that each child gets their right to education without financial hurdles. This is not the same for privately owned schools.

You will appreciate that provision of education is a business and private schools require parents to meet their financial obligations including paying school fees. Therefore, you cannot force the school to take your children back based on the right to education. Unfortunately, school fees must be paid. However, as you have rightly stated, most private schools have policies including consultations with the parent to find alternative solutions before dismissal.  You may consult with your children’s school and negotiate a workable solution that will not adversely affect the children’s academic progress and educational journey including paying the fees in instalments.

Orders to evacuate pending a disaster

Our national meteorology authority has predicted heavy rains that may result in floods. Government officials have ordered me to evacuate because most of our neighbourhood is likely to be affected. I do not want to leave as I believe this prediction is wrong. Is there a way to evade this order?
RE, Morogoro

Unfortunately, there is no way to evade an order to evacuate once it has been issued by the government. It is essential to note that the obligation for people to evacuate following an evacuation order is not just a suggestion but also a legal requirement under the Disaster Management Act and the Disaster Management Regulations.

The Disaster Management Act and Regulations empower local government authorities and disaster management agencies to enforce mandatory evacuations in order to protect lives as well as well-being of individuals living in high-risk areas during times of anticipated disasters. By adhering to the order to evacuate, individuals not only prioritise their safety but also ensure compliance with the obligation of individuals to act on advice from experts and government under section 31 of the Disaster Management Act. Doing so supports the efforts of disaster management agencies in minimising the impact of flooding events and protecting the wider community. We understand your concern, nonetheless, living in areas prone to floods can be extremely hazardous especially during periods of heavy rainfall. The safety of individuals and communities is the primary concern of the government during such situations and you have no choice but to comply.