Book ID 679
Mwijarubi, Mkama and Mbakilwa, Irene Hadzabe celebrate meat, 2002 August
Extract Author: Mkama Mwijarubi, Dar es Salaam and Irene Mbakilwa, Arusha
Extract Date: August 29 2002
THE Hadzabe in Manyara region turned up happy and in large numbers to be counted in the National Population and Housing Census after they were supplied with monkey and zebra meat last weekend.
Celebrating with their traditional ngoma dance at Mang'ola village in Karatu district the whole night, about 100 Hadzabe thanked the government for considering their request and said the gesture succeeded in bringing them together to get counted.
The district authorities however did not provide them with bhang and illicit brew as requested since marijuana is legally prohibited. Though zebra are also endangered species whose hunting is legally prohibited, according to Karatu District Commissioner Abdallah Kihato they hunted nine zebras and several monkeys in Mbulu and Ngorongoro districts for the Hadzabe.
This, he said, was with the objective of collecting the tribe to be counted instead of them dispersing for hunting in the day. They did warn the Hadzabe though not to get drunk during the exercise otherwise they would miss the meat.
"We are so happy that the government has heard our requests. This shows that the government cares for us," said one clan leader Salbogo Dofu. Speaking on behalf of others, Dofu also asked the government to allocate them special areas in order to avoid interference from livestock and farming activities, which destroys their natural food.
He said it would be better if there was a protected area for them to reserve some fruits, roots and animals they eat since this will save them from starvation.
According to Karatu DC, the 1988 census showed that there were over 1000 Hadzabe in the area, but the number has reduced to at least 800.
The Hadzabe who still recognise Mwalimu Nyerere as the leader mostly live in bushes and caves and are found in Karatu, Mbulu, and Ngorongoro districts in Arusha, Iramba district of Singida and Meatu in Shinyanga.