Power Struggles in the Management and Utilization of Suledo Village Land Forest Reserve, Kiteto District, Tanzania
AbstractContestation among stakeholders with varying interests is common in most rural areas involving over utilization of natural resources important for livelihood which often results into power struggles. This paper presents a power struggle situation in SULEDO Village Land Forest Reserve, Kiteto district, Tanzania where contestation among stakeholders has emerged with the increase of the value of the forest resources and lack of equity in the utilization of the resources. A total of 25 stakeholders involved in the management and utilization of SULEDO VLFR were identified along with their roles and interactions in the management of SULEDO VLFR. Stakeholders identified were categorized into three groups namely regulators, facilitators and users. Likewise, three categories of power were identified namely strategic, institutional and structural. Strategic power was found to be dominant. Results showed different power struggles among stakeholders whereby power struggle between Zonal Environmental Committee and SULEDO villages was found to be dominant and resulted into resource use conflicts. It was concluded that Community Based Forest Management remains a complex and contested arena, comprising many stakeholders with different powers, varied and conflicting interests. But what is important is to have a proper guidance of the processes and improving communication among key players.
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