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Rhino protection synergy- a royal affair set to bring about change (South Africa)

Abel Lugar, Queen Nombulelo Ngomane of KaHhoyi, Kate Repinga and Sydney Repinga. Original photo as published by The Lowvelder.

Lowvelder  | October 16, 2020

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Inkhosikati LaMdluli, Queen Nombulelo Ngomane of KaHhoyi, in Nkomazi, affirmed the commitment of the Ngomane tribe and KaHhoyi community to the SANParks cross-boundary protection programme.

The event was initiated by the non-profit organisation, NIG, which strives to create such collaborations.

Spearheading the royal families’ commitment to SANParks, patrons of the Stop Poaching Our Endangered African Rhino (SPEAR) non-profit organisation, Ngomane and KaHoyi’s community orientated Kate Repinga celebrated World Rhino Day at the chief’s kraal at KaHoyi on September 22.

They hosted the KNP canine division’s demonstration of instilled tracing skills and information, sharing the plight of rangers by sector ranger, Neels van Wyk.

He spoke about the life-threatening dangers the rangers are exposed to daily. He said exceptional work is done by the 46 who are deployed in the southern part of the Kruger.

The extent of the bush under guard protection is huge and demanding – and essentially half are in the east and half in the west of this southern area, diligently protecting areas equal to approximately 80,000 soccer fields, he said.

The rangers do so successfully. Protection is their calling and passion.

It is when one considers that rhino syndicates progressively target and recruit local youngsters, with whom these hardened criminals have no family ties nor could care about their lives, that the mandate of integrated protection is self-evident.

Ngomane’s commitment to co-protect the rhino is done by ensuring her members and the community’s contact with the Kruger, instilling an awareness in the community of the modus operandi of criminals, and fostering a cross-border protection zone – saving not only the lives of the rhino, but also the vulnerable targets of the syndicates.