On 2 September, traditional leaders from four of the five KAZA TFCA partner countries met in Livingstone, Zambia.
Chief Mukuni welcomed the gathering and said: 'This gathering of traditional leaders in the KAZA TFCA is long overdue. I am aware that each of us was engaged and involved in the national planning processes for the KAZA TFCA, but this is the first time that we meet as a collective grouping of traditional leaders, not confined to the sovereign boundaries of our individual countries, but along common challenges facing the communities that we represent. These challenges include poverty, limited livelihood options, human wildlife conflict, a lack of employment and investment opportunities, and control over our resources.'
He also said: 'Having a platform such as this, where we, the traditional leaders of the KAZA TFCA, can discuss solutions, provide insight, and guide development that affects the communities whom we represent, is an excellent manner to align government programmes, with the needs and expectations of men, women and children on the ground. The real beneficiaries of the KAZA TFCA Programme.
For this we are highly appreciative, yet need to advise the KAZA Secretariat and structures that we, as traditional leaders, will play an active role in crafting the solutions, implementing the programmes and monitoring the impact.
The meeting of traditional leaders was held in preparation of the State of the KAZA Symposium, scheduled for 31 October - 2 November 2016. The symposium will seek to:
Senior Chief Inyambo Yeta said: 'The successes of our various projects need to be broadcast, especially as a collective. This, I believe, we as traditional leaders, can carry to the symposium. We have success stories. We have methodologies, deeply embedded in our culture and heritage practices. We have lessons that can be shared with government agencies, donors and NGOs. Let them hear our voices."
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