Speaking at the inauguration of Ibanda Kyerwa Game Reserve at Murongo village in Murongo and Rumanyika Wards in Karagwe which historically were property of traditional rulers, Kigwangwala said the reserves have many benefits to the people because various institutions under his ministry have been giving dividends to the government coffers the money of which is allocated to strategic development projects.
He said the projects are run from revenue obtained from foreign and local tourists who visit the reserves that have wildlife attractions.
He said in addition to giving dividends to the government, the institutions also contribute to local residents near the reserves via various groups that mobilise themselves for their own development including social services such as building of health centres, schools and others.
He said the decision by President John Magufuli to establish six national reserves is within the overall plan in the Five Year Development Plan passed by Parliament in 2015 for the period of 2016-2021.
He said currently there are 22 national game reserves in the country from the 16 that were Reserved Forest Areas which also benefit the wananchi.
Meanwhile, Commissioner from National Conservation Authority (NCA) Dr Allan Kijazi said NCA places its efforts in controlling logging, charcoal burning and putting in place special five year plan for this.
Kijazi said strategic plans were underway in respect of ten reserves including Ibanda Kyerwa Game Reserve to install spots for attracting tourists including hotels.
He said they will also implant wildlife from other reserve areas to increase attractions that they were once famous for including apes and chimpanzees.