Conservation Lake Tanganyika (CLT) came about with the realisation that the decline of biodiversity in and around Nsumbu National Park was substantial and detrimental. The trend towards decreased fish stocks and biodiversity in the waters around Nsumbu threaten livelihoods that have relied on fishing for millennia. With high levels of terrestrial poaching threatening vital populations of large mammals such as Elephants, the possibility of sustainable development through tourism is also in decline and threatening the future of one of the most diverse protected areas on Lake Tanganyika, if not in Africa as a whole.
Extremely high levels of illegal activities threaten the biodiversity of the areas around Nsumbu National Park and consequently the future of sustainable resource use.
CLT was formed in early 2012 to provide an accountable and transparent organisation to raise funds and mobilise action towards reducing this decline and ultimately preserve the value of the combined resources of Lake Tanganyika and Nsumbu National Park. Registered as a not for profit in Zambia, CLT has concentrated its efforts on Nsumbu National Park and the areas surrounding it. The existence of a protected area provides an existing framework and legal status for CLT to operate in, as well as the possibility for local communities to realise true benefits from an area left in its natural state.
Since then CLT has grown and is actively involved on a daily basis in several areas of conservation.
The provision of much needed logistics, training and equipment for resource protection through the Zambia Wildlife Authority (ZAWA) is one of our most critical roles, this being recognised early on as a crisis situation to halt illegal activities within the National Park.
Providing suitable equipment and training to effectively police the protected area is key to stemming the decline.
We are also increasingly involved in community based efforts at a grassroots level, ultimately the ownership of all these natural resources lies with the local people themselves. CLT acts as facilitator and coordinator for Community Resource Boards (CRBs); Village Action Groups (VAGs) and encourages their active participation in decision making and implementation of action plans.
Encouraging grass roots community initiatives is ultimately the best prospect for long term conservation hopes.
We are also in the early stages of forming Conservation Clubs in the local schools during 2014 and hope to influence the next generation of Zambians to realise the great wealth and value of the land, waters, forests and animals that surround communities.
CLT is governed by a constitution and overseen by a board of directors. The significance of Lake Tanganyika and Nsumbu National park is reflected in our board which is made up of some of the most influential people in Zambian conservation and natural resource management:
Christiaan Liebenberg, Chairman: founder of Conservation Lower Zambezi and owner of Chongwe Safaris.
Jake Da Motta: Chairman of South Luangwa Conservation Society and active conservation figure in Zambia
Adrian Carr: Legendary conservationist and pioneer of tourism in South Luangwa
Rolf Shenton: Founder of Grassroots Trust and proponent of low input farming, land care and community empowerment over natural resources.
In early 2014 CLT also welcomed Clint Rodgers and Peter Goneos to the board.
Conservation Lake Tanganyika operates an office in Nsumbu Township where all operations and projects are overseen by Chief Executive Officer Craig Zytkow. Craig grew up in Nsumbu and has a passion for Lake Tanganyika that is the driving force behind CLT.
Craig Zytkow, CEO.
Maxwell Silungwe is the only paid employee of CLT, A retired Senior WPO from ZAWA his role and vast experience as Senior Conservation Officer is a vital link between our cooperating partners on the ground.