17 August 2017

Zimbabwe: 'Translocation of 2 000 Wild Animals Aboveboard'

Government's move to translocate 2 000 wild animals to Mozambique was approved by Cabinet in April, the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority said yesterday. Zimparks spokesperson Mr Tinashe Farawo yesterday said the donation was done under the Great Limpopo Trans Frontier Conservation Area (GLTFCA), an arrangement that enables cooperation amongst nations in wildlife conservation.

GLTFCA involves three countries namely Zimbabwe, South Africa and Mozambique.

Under the same arrangement, South Africa is also donating 4 000 wild animals to Mozambique.

The revelations by Zimparks is contrary to reports in the private and online media that the translocation did not follow due processes.

"Cabinet on the 11th of April 2017 approved the donation of 2 000 animals to Mozambique and all due processes were followed before the translocation," said Mr Farawo.

"However, despite all the processes being followed the animals are yet to be translocated to Mozambique.

"The donation followed ministerial engagements through Great Limpopo Trans frontier Conservation Area (GLTFCA) regarding development of the Mozambique component of the TFCA."

Mr Farawo said Zimbabwe was a member to a number of Trans Frontier Conservation Areas (TFCA's) founded under the SADC Protocol on Wildlife Conservation and Law Enforcement.

"These TFCA's include Kavango Zambezi Trans Frontier Conservation Area (KAZA) where Zimbabwe is collaborating with Zambia, Botswana, Angola and Namibia in the North Western parts of the country; Greater Mapungubwe Trans Frontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA), where Zimbabwe collaborates with Botswana and South Africa in the South Western parts of the country; and the Great Limpopo Trans Frontier Conservation Area (GLTFCA) where Zimbabwe collaborates with South Africa and Mozambique in the south eastern parts of the country," he said.

"TFCA's were founded on the principles that wildlife straddles across international boundaries, hence the need for cooperation amongst nations in wildlife conservation."

Mr Farawo said Zimbabwe, South Africa and Botswana signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the Greater Mapungumbwe Transfrontier Conservation Area (GMTFCA) in June 2006.

"It is under this TFCA framework that Zimbabwe pledged to donate 20 rhinos to Botswana of which eight have already been translocated from Malilangwe conservancy in 2014," he said.

"The black rhinos were moved from the Zimbabwe component of the GLTFCA to Botswana component of KAZA TFCA.

"Zimbabwe, South Africa and Mozambique signed a Treaty for GLT FCA in December 2002. In the same context under the GLT FCA, Zimbabwe agreed to donate 2 000 animals to Mozambique, and South Africa is donating 4 000 animals to Mozambique."

The donations, he said, were meant to foster regional integration and strengthening trilateral relationships among the three countries under GLTFCA.

"The donation was a progressive step towards celebrating Zimbabwe's conservation success by helping our neighbouring country and expanding the wildlife range in the SADC Region," Mr Farawo said.

"When Great Limpopo TFCA was established at the turn of the millennium, there were few wild animals in Limpopo National Park and South Africa was the first to donate thousands of these animals to Limpopo National Park in Mozambique."

Mr Farawo said as part of wildlife conservation efforts, Zimparks always monitored wildlife populations to establish areas which needed destocking or restocking.


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