15 October 2017

Botswana: Great Plains Donate to Tlhokomela Trust

Gaborone — Great Plains Conservation has donated eight vehicles to the Department of Wildlife and National Parks for anti-poaching campaigns.

The former German army vehicles were donated at a gala dinner which was attended by the patron of the trust and President Lt Gen. Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama and Vice President, Mr Mokgweetsi Masisi on Friday.

Great Plains Conservation is a multi-award winning company with safari camps and lodges in Kenya and Botswana.

A conservation organisation, Great Plains operates ecotourism to maintain conservation as a sustainable land use alternative.

In his welcome remarks, the chairperson of the trust and Debswana managing director, Mr Balisi Bonyongo said "wildlife is Botswana's heritage' hence the need to protect wild animals for the future generation of the country.

He said because diamonds were getting finished, wildlife was now taking over as the new engine of economic growth.

He said Botswana was proud to be one of the leading countries in conservation and the ability to protect all wildlife species, especially those considered endangered.

Mr Bonyongo explained that Tlhokomela trust, which means "Take Care" was formed last year, and was designed to provide a safe environment within the borders of Botswana for the sustainable protection of critically endangered wildlife species.

He said one of the main objectives of the trust was to raise funds for continued monitoring of endangered species for security and biological purposes.

It also promotes endangered species for the conservation of biodiversity in Botswana as well as to promote scientific and educational studies of endangered species.

He further stated that Tlhokomela played a leading role in international efforts to conserve endangered species as well as scientific research in the species.

Speaking at the same event, the Minister of Environment, Natural Resources Conservation and Tourism, Mr Tshekedi Khama thanked young Batswana who participated in a competition to design a logo for the trust.

He revealed that there were a number of initiatives lined up to generate awareness of the trust, adding that it was designed to help endangered species in the face of exploitation, habitat degradation, habitat loss, pollution, disease, climate change and as a result of invasive species.

Meanwhile, President Lt Gen.Dr Seretse Khama Ian Khama Khama awarded certificates to various companies and individuals who contributed to the establishment of the trust.

The companies included Showgroup, Benju, JC Le Roux, Vegosoft, De Beers Group, Lukari Diamond and Conservation 360.

President Khama and the Vice President were also treated to a 15 minutes fireworks and some traditional music.

Source : BOPA

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