An article published 29/12/2020, NGORONGORO IS AT TIPPING POINT AS POPULATION SOARS claims the native population is at 100,000 and "threatening the wellbeing of one of nature's wonders that attract millions of foreign and local tourists earning Tanzania billions of schillings annually".
One can conclude, from the NCA Authority approved Resettlement Strategy quote above, that the natural growth (births - deaths) rate of the Ngorongoro pastoral community is indeed 2.5%, while the 3.5% includes both natural growth and immigration. 2.5% is much lower than the 4% cited for non-indigenous cultivators who are encroaching upon the NCA (Ngorongoro Conservation Area).
Why the NCA Authority (NCAA) allowed immigrants to come into the NCA is a mystery since they have always been so concerned about overpopulation (this sounds like racism to me). But immigration can be stopped simply by indigenous people reporting any new immigrants in the recent past and, from there on, into the future.
The indigenous groups should not be blamed for this carelessness on the part of the NCA.
In addition, a large number of people, who are not indigenous, are living in the NCA, many are NCAA staff, others are tourist hotel staff, tourist shop staff, health clinic, school and religious staff. These people have a much larger per person impact on the NCA environment. Other non-indigenous are immigrants, many coming into the area in the 70s and 80s. The total population of Maasai would be only 65,000.
From 1980 to 2010 UNESCO reports concluded that the increase of the human population posed a threat to the ecological value and integrity of NCA as a WHS (Olenasha, 2014; UNESCO, 2009; WHC, ICOMOS and IUCN, 2012).
For 40 years UNESCO has been predicting this same threat and wildlife has still not diminished. Have you ever heard of “crying wolf?”
Also counted in the 65,000 are the men who left the NCA to find work, and the students attending secondary school and universities most of the year outside the NCA. There are also a number of people who were counted and who work for NGOs but live outside the NCA (in modern housing). If their spouses and children were also counted, that would add up to a big difference.
Also consider that, if the NCAA replaced the 700 NCAA employees who are not Maasai, with Maasai employees, wouldn’t those Maasai employees be able to live like the former 630 employees live - in modern houses? For many it would be the same employee houses that are already there, or they would be outside the NCA. Don’t Maasai deserve to live in houses like that? There would be 700 less people (plus their family household members) in the NCA, and no difference in the number of houses.
If Maasai were treated fairly, and education was sufficient, you would see many more Maasai living outside the NCA.
Because of their expertise in management and conservation of resources for wildlife and livestock, the Maasai ecosystem is home to spectacular assemblages of African wildlife populations.
Approximately 25,000 large animals, mostly ungulates, are confined in the 250km sq Ngorongoro Crater. This crater contains the highest density of mammalian predators in Africa, including the lion population, endangered wildlife species including the black rhino, wild dog, cheetah and elephant.
The area is the calving grounds for over 1 million wildebeest of the Great Serengeti-Mara ecosystem ...(Melabo 2020)
This is in contrast to most of the rest of the world where the average size of wildlife populations has plummeted more than two-thirds in less than 50 years, according to the WWF (World Wildlife Fund).
Traditional indigenous territories encompass around 22 per cent of the world's land surface and they coincide with areas that hold 80 per cent of the planet's biodiversity. There is increasing recognition that the ancestral lands of indigenous peoples contain the most intact ecosystems and provide the most effective and sustainable form of conservation." From Vicky Tauli-Corpuz, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples in her Statement to the UN General Assembly.
In the NCA, the number of people is not what is contributing to the degradation of the property. Degradation is made by people with large ‘footprints’, tourism, wild and domestic animals, and failure to burn unpalatable grasses. But there is no evidence of cattle causing the degradation, and cattle numbers have stopped growing, due to restrictions. Unpalatable grasses seems to be the biggest part of the degradation. Yet the NCA Authority fails to burn them like the Maasai did when they were in charge. Wildlife numbers are stable, and the “footprint” of the Maasai is small so the value of the “property” would still be the same if it weren’t for tourism.
The country of Tanzania has sustained relatively high growth, averaging 6–7 percent a year, over the past decade. At the same time, the East African nation of 55 million people already has one of the world’s highest birth rates - around 5 children per woman. These numbers of people are putting pressure on the park property from the outside.
MLUM 5.2.3 Human settlements (FALSE CLAIM)
The Multiple Land Use Model, a plan proposed for the NCA says:
“There is an increase in construction of improved houses with corrugated-iron sheets. Most of these improved houses do not blend with the environment and changes the scenic view of NCA. The situation is caused by absence of guideline to ongoing constructions. Hence, it is necessary to design and use building code to guide settlement development in areas earmarked for settlements within NCA.Plates 4A and 4B show Kimba business center as well as a primary school, a dispensary and settlements in Kayapus and Misigiyo villages respectively.”