Impact of Policy and Legal Reforms on a Pastoral System in Lower Kagera Sub-Basin, North Western Tanzania
A socio-economic study was conducted in the lower Kagera sub-basin in North Western Tanzania to assess the impact of land-use policies and legal reformson pastoral system. Questionnaire surveys and PRA approaches were employed to collect data in four districts: Muleba, Missenyi, Karagwe and Ngara in Kagera region. The main economic activities in the study area were small hold farming (74%), agro-pastoralism (48%) and pastoralism (4%). The majority own between 1 and 2 acres of land, held under customary regimes (60.3. There were experienced increasing land shortages (69.2%) mainly attributed to unfavourable legal and policy framework (96.4%). The main constraint faced by pastoralists was shortage of grazing land (52.9%). The structures established to administer land resources and resolve land-use conflicts were reported to be ineffectual. The area is facing increasing land-use conflicts that involve farmers against pastoralists, farmers against farmers, farmers against investors, and farmer against government agencies. A number of newly introduced policies and laws aiming at commercialization of pastoral system had led to expropriation of customary lands to new investors. The pastoral systems are now on transition, and increasingly becoming sedentarized. There are emerging commercial investors who were partitioning communal grazing lands and converting them into commercial ranches. In order to cope with changes it is recommended the interventions that will intensify the pastoral system by increasing both rangeland and livestock productivity and ensure sustainable rangeland health in Kagera sub- basin.
Keywords: Kagera sub-basin, pastoral systems, land-use policy reforms, communal grazing lands, land-use conflicts