Zimbabwe: COVID-19 Hits Zimparks Operations

The novel coronavirus pandemic has severely affected wildlife conservation efforts by the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks), as its main lifeline earnings from foreign tourism have dwindled to critical levels.

ZimParks spokesperson Tinashe Farawo said last week that lack of revenue had badly affected his organisation.

"The situation is bad and very soon we will not be able to pay our rangers," he said. "Tourism is dead for now and we are appealing to the Government to allow us to open our parks and other income generating activities.

"ZimParks relies heavily from tourism earnings for its operational activities. Wildlife tourism plays a critical role in our foreign currency generation through game viewing and licensed hunting. We also use the proceeds to respond to human-wildlife conflicts."

ZimParks does not receive Government funding and it largely depends on tourism revenue to run its operations and care for the animals and plants in protected areas.

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