Minister Urges Residents to Help Fight Poaching

| May 8, 2015

Minister of Environment, Wildlife and Tourism, Mr Tshekedi Khama, has urged residents of Khawa in Kgalagadi District to help authorities in the fight against poaching.

Addressing a kgotla meeting in Khawa on May 4, Mr Tshekedi said for the authorities to win the fight against poachers, residents should come on board.

Earlier on when welcoming the minister, Kgosi Piet Manyoro complained of wildlife animals, especially lions that roamed the village. Kgosi Manyoro said the lions were killing their livestock and posed danger to wildlife officers who on many occasions had to scare them.

He said time and again wildlife officers encountered vehicle breakdowns in the area hence the need to provide them with vehicles that could traverse through the difficult terrains.

Furthermore, he said, the veterinary doctor who darts troublesome lions needed to be stationed at least in Tsabong rather than in Gaborone because whenever they need help it takes him a long time to come.

Kgosi Manyoro noted that though government laments about poaching, it was surprising that they allowed game farmers to hunt every year, the practice, he said encourages poaching.

Commenting, residents asked government to issue them permits to hunt small game, saying they used to survive from hunting them, through tanning their hides and selling them.

They also raised a concern about poachers who steal the animals and sell them in neighbouring countries, adding that there was need to establish drinking spots for wild animals to prevent them from crossing the border into other countries.

In response, the minister promised residents that wildlife officers would be increased in the area.

Minister Khama said his ministry faced many problems such as the fence maintenance aimed at preventing buffaloes from coming into contact with cattle.

He encouraged residents to work closely with Botswana Tourism Organisation (BTO) to form trusts so that they could appreciate the importance of protecting wildlife and ultimately reaping from it.

The minister the issue of drinking spots would be looked into.

Source : BOPA

Source : Botswana Daily News

Category: News

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