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4 kilos of rhino horns land priest, police officer and a Lusaka businessman in court! (Zambia)

By Antipoaching
Chris Phiri, Zambia Reports | April 27, 2020

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A priest, a Zambia Police officer and a Lusaka businessman have appeared in court on charges of illegal possession of over four kilogrammes of rhino horns.

Before Lusaka Chief Resident Magistrate, Lameck Mwale, were Mizhi Sandu, 43, a priest, Mutakatala Mwiya, 44, a police officer, both of Lusaka West and Frank Nakakena, 53, a businessman of Kabwata who all pleaded not guilty to possessing illegal prescribed trophy.

The court records show that on April 14, 2020 in Lusaka, the trio had in their possession two pieces of rhino horns weighing 4.33 kilogrammes, prescribed trophy which is the property of the Republic of Zambia, without a certificate of ownership from the Director of the Department of National Parks and Wildlife.

The accused are on police bond. Magistrate Mwale adjourned the case to June 11, 2020 for commencement of trial.

You can get in touch with our news team by emailing us at: editor@zambiareports.com

CELEBRATING AFRICAN WOMEN—LUWI NGULUKA

By Conservation

#IWD2020 #EACHFOREQUAL

Growing up close to the Okavango Delta, living in harmony with nature and wildlife has always been an important part of Luwi Nguluka’s life. Now, as Awareness Manager of Wildlife Crime Prevention in Zambia, this energetic conservationist plays a key role in spreading awareness about the detrimental effects of the illegal wildlife trade.

Since 2017, Luwi has led a media campaign centered around the bushmeat trade, helping to make her fellow Zambians aware of the dangers of consuming meat from wild animals—a common practice in her home country. The illegal bushmeat trade is, in all probability, the single greatest threat to wildlife in Zambia, with bushmeat poaching reducing prey populations significantly over the last few decades.

Recently, the spread of the coronavirus underscored the risks of bushmeat consumption. “If the source really is pangolins, we need to start paying even more attention to this practice,” Luwi told the Shannon Elizabeth Foundation. “There is no reason why we should be eating pangolins or trading in their scales.”

Luwi has always been passionate about inclusivity and diversity in the conservation field and has made it her mission to help forge a gender-equal industry in Zambia. The Women for Conservation initiative—which gives Zambian women who work in or are interested in wildlife conservation a chance to meet regularly, share ideas, and support each other—was also initiated by her.

While Luwi was fortunate enough to grow up in a supportive family that encouraged her to pursue a career in conservation, she found it challenging to be taken seriously when she first entered the field. “I often walked into meetings where, at the back of my mind, I knew people were thinking that I’m just a little girl and that I can’t possibly know what I’m talking about. I felt the need to overcompensate by being slightly more aggressive than I ordinarily had to in order to be taken seriously.” Over time, however, Luwi learned how to make her voice heard, achieving much success along the way.

Luwi encourages younger women to enter the field of conservation, even if they have an academic background that doesn’t seem to fit. “There is no one-size-fits-all formula for getting into conservation. There are all sorts of jobs and opportunities available, so don’t let what you studied hold you back.”

On International Women’s Day 2020, Luwi’s message to the women of Africa is this: “There is nothing you cannot do if you put your mind to it. You are as capable, as equipped, and as powerful as anyone else on the planet.”

 

Truck kills two rhinos in Zambian national park

By Conservation
The Independent Online | February 27, 2020

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RUSTENBURG: Two white rhinos were killed when a truck hit them in the Mosi-oa-Tunya national park in Livingstone, the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation reported.

Original photo as published by IOL: Two rhinos died after a truck hit them at the Mosi -oa-Tunya National Park in Livingstone, Zambia. Picture: Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation

It said the truck with Namibian registration numbers hit the animals on the Livingstone-Kazungula road which passes through the national park.

Southern Province Minister Edify Hamukale told the broadcaster that he had instructed the department of national parks and wildlife, the road development agency and the road transport and safety agency to put up speed humps on the road within the park to avoid similar accidents.

He said it was also important to place visible warning signs indicating that wild animals often crossed the road within the park, to alert motorists.

Why is poaching prevalent in Chobe National Park, the Okavango Delta? (Botswana)

By Antipoaching, Conservation
Mmegi Online | January 31, 2020

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There has been a lot of reporting about poaching in some of Botswana’s national parks and government has as always played down there porting saying there was no poaching.

First as a concerned citizen, I call upon President Mokgweetsi Masisi to stop forthwith being dishonest with Batswana.

I listened carefully to his press conference on arrival at the VVIP lounge when he disembarked from the Qatar Airways flight on January 26, 2020, insinuating that the upsurge of rhino poaching was some kind of conspiracy.

Nnyaa Rraetsho, we are having this problem because of the incompetence of your armed forces i.e. the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) to be specific.

Original photo as published by Mmegi Online: A dead, dehorned rhino. BDF accused of ‘incompetence’.

Mr President you have a BDF Commander and his general staff, and senior management who never spent a single night in the bush with the soldiers. They deceive you claiming to be going on inspections spending a lot of money staying in hotels being on government-sponsored holidays. As a litmus test, I challenge them to look you straight in the face and confirm if Generals Mompati Merafhe and Ian Khama ever stayed in hotels whilst on operational trips? They never did.

I will not dwell on Generals Matshwenyego Fisher and Tebogo Masire as I will be wasting space writing about them.

Mr President you were a sitting member of the Central Intelligence Committee before attaining your position and you know very well that poaching was a priority reported in the intelligence assessment by the Director General DIS, every Tuesday until an anti-poaching coordinator was appointed.

This coordinator from the military reported the devastating effects every week and measures were taken to address the situation. When you took over the Presidency, you and your senior bodyguard Peter Magosi reversed everything that was in place to address poaching in Botswana.

Poaching is real, these teams assembled in Mambova village in Zambia have nothing to lose.

Mr President, you should apologise to Batswana that you and your disinformation machinery have been dishonest. You disarmed members of the DWNP anti-poaching game scouts on a silly charade that they were a threat to your life and were incompetent of using their newly procured FN rifles, were you aware that these were former members of the BDF?

These game scouts are deployed in the Tsabong area and have never been deployed in the area where poaching of elephants and rhinos is rampant and you know this for a fact.

Sir, it is only the BDF, which is deployed in that area. To jog your memory, the Botswana Police Special Support Group is deployed in the Central Kgalagai Game Reserve and the Directorate of Intelligence and Security is deployed in Orapa, Jwaneng, Nxai Pan, and Makgadikgadi Game Reserve whilst the Prison Service supervised by the DIS is in the Ngwasha and Panda area, none of them are in the border zone.

Mr President, your soldiers are no longer an impeccable fighting force that fought poachers in the yesteryears, those soldiers lifted the country]’s name during the Merafhe and Khama days.

The current crop is afraid of engaging poachers because they do not have fighting capability, their weapons are old and rickety they are no match to former UNITA soldiers and Zambians, who cross the Caprivi-strip easily into the delta.

They spend a lot of time watching TV in an operational area, they leave the operational area every month end to draw salaries, what do they buy in the bush, where have you seen this happening? There is lack of appropriate strategy, lack of coordination with neighbouring States as you instil that their priority is involvement in politics, there is a lot of poor leadership, experienced officers are deployed in areas are not qualified, there is no political will to address the situation.

You are failing to provide them with the necessities of fighting an enemy. The BDF does not have communication radios, patrols do not communicate with either their base for support or air support, they do not have vehicles, they do not have simply batteries including GPS’s, they do not have night goggles, their night fighting capability is zero. They are ill-trained, this can be witnessed by the recent killing of a rhino hardly two kilometres from the special forces camp. Is that not an embarrassment? Who is supporting the military with intelligence? Your so-called DG responsible for intelligence, is always following you, since when has he become your senior protection officer? It is not surprising as poaching is way above him, he failed dismally when he was the brigade commander and eventually had to find the easier way out of the military. If they are unable to protect our wildlife, can they protect the nation or yourself, are they not going to crumble in time of need?

Mr President, advise your aunt at the Ministry of Tourism that dehorning these rhinos will be a disaster as the intruders will just kill them to eliminate tracking them for distances and only to find that they are dehorned. In summing up, apologise to the nation for lying. Like Kgosi Ngakaagae said, “Masisi should press the reset button and shouldn’t be ashamed to do it. It’s not an unpartisan issue. It’s about an iconic, endangered species”. Your tribesman at the Ground Forces Command is incompetent please drop him! Stop embarrassing Batswana, swallow your pride and be man enough to say I am sorry. Let us employ quality and not quantity.

*Metlha Sesupo is a pseudo name of the author.

 

Into the wild : The contrasting stories of Africa’s wildlife

By Antipoaching, Conservation
The Namibian, Helge Denker | January 22, 2020

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CAMPFIRE drinks in the fading light of dusk, after a long, full day in the African bush is the order of the night, followed by animated chatter about the day’s activities and diverse wildlife sightings, about conservation and the state of the world.

Later, a superb three-course meal in the dining tent, including a perfectly grilled game fillet takes centre stage. This is the good life. The wild life.

This is not a scene from a luxury tourist camp in a national park, or some pristine last wilderness. This is the setting at the small and stylish Ondjou Safaris hunting camp in Dzoti Conservancy.

The international media is filled with news of rapidly declining wildlife populations. Calls to save the last elephants, rhinos and lions are more urgent than ever. Yet the story of ‘the last’ should not be applied everywhere, as the country is not part of this story.

Namibia has a different tale to tell. Through pragmatic conservation approaches, wildlife in this country has recovered from historic lows over the past five decades.

Notwithstanding fluctuations caused by droughts, most of the country’s game populations are healthier today than at any time over the past 150 years. This is not a wild claim. It is a fact illustrated by a wealth of scientific data. Elephant numbers have tripled since the mid-nineties.

Namibia has one of the healthiest black rhino populations on earth. After local extinction over a century ago, the white rhino was reintroduced and occurs again in many places and in good numbers. The famous ‘desert lions’ of the north-west are not ‘the last’, but have increased from about two dozen in 1995 to well over a 100 today.

Yet, internationally, Namibia’s conservation approaches are controversial – because they include the persona non grata of environmental activism – the hunter.

Original photo as published by The Namibian: Over half of Namibia’s elephant population of around 22 000 animals occurs in the extreme north-east of the country – an important tourist attraction, but also a significant burden for subsistence farmers. (Photo: Helge Denker)

DZOTI AND THE BOYS

Dzoti Conservancy (registered in 2009) is a little-known communal conservancy in the Zambezi region. In an area of 287 square kilometres, just over 2 000 residents live on a mix of traditional livelihoods – and a vital boost provided by diverse returns from legal hunting and wildlife harvesting.

In Namibia, hunting of free-roaming, indigenous wildlife in an open system, which generates direct income for conservation activities and rural communities, is called conservation hunting. It is clearly different from trophy shooting, which is usually carried out in fenced areas where introduced species offer easy targets – and the trophy is everything. For conservation hunting, a passion for intact wildlands is everything – wildlands that are maintained through hunting inputs.

Just as the diverging status of wildlife in differently managed countries is often overlooked, the differences between trophy shooting and conservation hunting are not widely appreciated – all hunters are the bad boys, no matter what. Yet, in Namibia’s communal hunting concessions, conservation hunters are the good bad boys – for local communities and for the health of wildlife.

Importantly, the community decides how to use the land and its resources; whether to form a conservancy, and whether to create a hunting concession. Most communities welcome conservation hunting because it generates significant returns – and because hunting, and meat to eat, are a traditional part of rural lives.

Hunting revenue is the only significant income for Dzoti Conservancy. Without hunting, this conservation structure would not exist here.

Without hunting, there would be no conservancy, that is, no game guards, no patrols, no human-wildlife conflict mitigation, no anti-poaching efforts, no core wildlife area – and certainly a lot less wildlife.

THE HUNTER VS THE POACHER

A couple of months ago at Dzoti, one poacher had been arrested, while another had managed to flee with a rhino horn and elephant tusk. Both the rhino and elephant appear to have been killed in neighbouring Botswana.

For Dzoti, this is the most high-profile wildlife crime case this year because it involved Africa’s primary poaching targets. For Ondjou Safaris co-owner Hentie van Heerden, it was just one of more than a dozen cases over the past decade in which he has provided active support to conservancy game guards and the police, usually with a positive outcome – arresting poachers.

In Namibia’s communal lands, elephant hunting is increasingly controversial. Botswana recently decided to re-open elephant hunting.

Human-wildlife conflicts had increased. The communities most affected by the ban wanted to have it lifted. An international outcry ensued – with a sad disregard for local realities and the autonomy of democratic African governance.

Namibia has allowed a limited number of elephant hunts each year for several decades, based on a system of population counts and quotas. During this time, the country’s elephant numbers have increased from 7 500 to over 22 000 – and the great pachyderms have expanded their range.

At Dzoti, the elephant quota of Ondjou Safaris has varied between four and five elephants each year. Over the past decade, 35 trophy elephants have been hunted in the conservancy. The average ivory weight has remained consistent, and the heaviest tusk of the last 10 years (65 pounds) was obtained in 2019.

THE PASSION OF THE HUNTER

Late into the evening, with the sounds of the African bush drifting into the dining tent, I sit talking with Hentie and his wife, Denise. Their passion for wildlife and wildlands is manifest. Mention the elusive sitatunga, or ask about the enigmatic serval – and watch Hentie’s eyes light up. Not because he wants to hunt them, but because he has a genuine connection to the wild and all its creatures.

Hunters may decorate their homes with the skulls and skins of their quarry, but these simply serve as tangible, authentic reminders of memorable times spent in wildlands.

Hunters love the dynamics of wildlands, where buffalo and elephant and bushbuck have space to roam, where secretive species like sitatunga can thrive … and where, for brief periods, the hunter can return to the rhythms of nature.

When Dzoti Conservancy was formed, wildlife was scarce and skittish. A decade later, a wondrous transformation has taken place. Warthog and impala are once again common in the area. Bushbuck and waterbuck are thriving. Sitatunga are regularly encountered.

Lion, leopard and serval all hunt here. Buffalo and elephant come and go in large herds. Even giraffe – which had become locally extinct in the Zambezi region in the early 1990s – are back. A series of reintroductions into Mudumu National Park and adjoining conservancies have allowed them to recolonise Dzoti.

The transformation is much bigger than Dzoti, it’s a national recovery – one that is particularly impressive in the Zambezi region. Tourists are enjoying great wildlife sightings in the region’s national parks. But the parks are small, and could not survive as islands within a sea of agriculture.

Through the mosaic of core wildlife areas, movement corridors and buffer zones that the conservancies create, a vast landscape of wildlife habitat can be maintained. But the conservancies depend on conservation hunting to function. If animal rights activists succeed in banning all hunting, a proven conservation model will collapse, critics argue.

In the end, wildlife will be the loser. The community will be the loser. Simply put, there will be no winners.

*Helge Denker is a Namibian writer-naturalist. He has worked in various sectors within the Namibian tourism and environmental spheres for the past three decades, and has published numerous articles on the country’s conservation issues.

rhino

Top cop nabbed for rhino poaching (Zimbabwe)

By Antipoaching
Newszdezimbabwe | January 22, 2020

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A Bulawayo senior police officer and two accomplices, one of them a Zambian, have appeared in court for allegedly poaching rhinos at Bubye Valley Conservancy at Mazunga area in Beitbridge.

Nhlanhla Nkomo (43), who is an Assistant Inspector stationed at Pumula Police Station, Stanley Katandika (50), a Zambian national and Owen Nyoni (35), a former ZimParks ranger appeared before Beitbridge magistrate Mr Toyindepi Zhou facing charges of violating a section of the Parks and Wildlife Act (poaching) and possession of a firearm or ammunition without a certificate. They were remanded in custody to February 3.

The three accused persons were apprehended last week by Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZimParks) rangers following a tip off.

Prosecuting, Misheck Guwanda said on January 17 the three accused persons were cornered by ZimParks rangers who were patrolling inside Bubye Valley Conservancy, which is a protected area. They were allegedly hunting for rhinos when they were intercepted by the rangers who managed to recover a loaded firearm and ammunition.

The court heard that Nkomo tried to flee to evade arrest and he was only arrested following the assistance of game scouts and tracker dogs.

African Parks’ most hopeful conservation news in 2019

By Conservation, Land conservation, Science and technology
African Parks / PR Newswire | December 18, 2019

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JOHANNESBURG: Successful conservation interventions are critical, now more than ever, to improve the trajectory of the planet’s biodiversity and the state of its ecosystems, as highlighted in the IPBES global biodiversity assessment published this year. Well managed protected areas are vital anchors of sanctuary, stability and opportunity for millions of people and countless species.

With the largest and most ecologically diverse portfolio of parks under management by any one organisation across Africa, African Parks’ goal is to realize the ecological, social and economic value of these landscapes, preserving ecological functions, delivering clean air, healthy watersheds, carbon sequestration, food security, and better health for millions of people.

Here is some of their most hopeful news from 2019:

  • Zimbabwe’s exceptional Matusadona National Park which abuts Lake Kariba became the 16th park to join African Parks’ management portfolio. Through partnership with the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority, they will fully restore the park as a leading wildlife sanctuary for the region.
  • One of history’s largest international black rhino translocations was concluded with the WWF Black Rhino Range Expansion Project, using source populations in South Africa to boost Malawi’s population to create a valuable range state for the critically endangered species.
  • The largest ever transport of rhinos from Europe to Africa was undertaken, releasing five Eastern black rhinos, bred successfully by the European Association of Zoos and Aquaria Ex Situ Programme, into Rwanda’s Akagera National Park, helping to build a sustainable wild population of this subspecies numbering only around 1,000 in Africa.
  • Cheetahs were introduced to Majete Wildlife Reserve in Malawi to form a crucial founder population and help grow the range of the vulnerable big cat; and almost 200 buffalo were released into Zambia’s Bangweulu Wetlands to restock one of the continent’s greatest wetland landscapes.
  • 100 years of conservation was celebrated with the Barotse Royal Establishment and Zambia’s Department of National Parks and Wildlife (DNPW) in Liuwa Plain National Park with the official opening of the world class King Lewanika Lodge. The event was testament to their 16-year partnership to restore the ecosystem, promote livelihoods development, provide employment, education, and support to thousands of people, while seeing the park emerge as one of the world’s top travel destinations hailed by The New York Times and TIME Magazine.
  • TIME Magazine featured Chad’s Zakouma National Park on its list of World’s Greatest Places 2019, and Akagera National Park in Rwanda continued to see remarkable strides in tourism development, with Wilderness Safaris opening the gorgeous luxury tented Magashi Camp.
  • With several partners they have installed the most advanced technology available, from Vulcan’s EarthRanger, ESRI, Smart Parks, and others, to improve real-time monitoring of wildlife and to support law enforcement within the parks.

These advancements are only possible because of the partnerships with national governments who entrust African Parks with managing their natural heritage. Their shared vision of a future for people and wildlife is realised through the generous funding received from a global community of committed supporters, including anchor donors: Acacia Conservation Fund (ACF), Adessium Foundation, Arcus Foundation, Dutch Postcode Lottery, European Union, Fondation des Savanes Ouest-Africaines (FSOA), Fondation Segré, Government of Benin, Howard G. Buffett Foundation, MF Jebsen Conservation Foundation, National Geographic Society, Oppenheimer Philanthropies, People’s Postcode Lottery, Save the Elephants and Wildlife Conservation Network’s Elephant Crisis Fund, Stichting Natura Africae, The Walton Family Foundation, The Wildcat Foundation, The Wyss Foundation, WWF-the Netherlands, WWF-Belgium, UK Aid, U.S. Department of State and USAID.

Overall, these gains are only possible because of the myriad support received, from events to charitable auctions and races, recommendations to friends, travel to the parks, bequests and helping to tell the story of the urgency of the conservation work, and to generous board members in Hong Kong, the Netherlands, Switzerland, the U.S. and South Africa.

Source: African Parks

Related links: www.africanparks.org

 

Skills panacea for poaching (Botswana)

By Antipoaching, Conservation
The Daily News | December 8, 2019

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An increase of poaching incidences, especially killing of rhinos, worries President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi.

Speaking on December 6 at a graduation ceremony of the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) Defence Command and Staff College (DCSC), President Masisi urged graduates to utilise skills they had acquired to win the war against poaching.

“You have graduated at a time when this country is facing the challenge of poaching. Poaching has the potential to wipe out our wildlife resources thus threatening the tourism industry, one of the key engines of the growth of our economy, not to mention the ripple effect it will have on the livelihoods of the persons who live proximately to such wildlife resource,” he said.

He said the BDF graduates should pass down what they had learnt to their subordinates, thereby maintaining a sustainable, well informed, trained, disciplined and agile workforce.

“I’m informed that while appreciating the utility of the military and other security players in the country, you were also introduced to the defence and strategic studies component. This has enriched your understanding of how the defence policy and national security fit into foreign policy and diplomacy as well as democratic civil military relations,” Dr Masisi, also Commander in Chief, added.

He said a number of diplomats had been at the college giving lectures on issues of international security, diplomacy and foreign policy. He said this served to enrich the curriculum and its growth.

Dr Masisi said the input from the diplomatic community had enhanced the prestige of the college.

“The presence of students from Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe in this college demonstrates our unwavering commitment to promote both bilateral and regional cooperation. It also resonates well with my statement during the recent State-of-the-Nation Address that Botswana continues to nurture friendly relations with other countries and forge strategic partnerships with the international community for her benefit and the greater good of humanity,” he said.

He said such encounters formed part of the meaningful relations that must be cherished and grown from strength to strength.

Dr Masisi said the graduates’ qualification would go a long way in preparing them to comprehend and manage any threat that might be dictated by realities of today’s security environment which was volatile, complex and ambiguous in nature.

For his part, DCSC commandant, Brigadier Papadi Monnatlhare said the graduation of the senior command and staff course class 12 of 2019 was the culmination of a year of hard work and commitment.

He said the college had done its utmost to equip them with the tools of their trade and their supervisors and subordinates were looking forward to reap the rewards.

“It is incumbent upon yourselves to live up to expectations through embracing high levels of professionalism, providing exemplary leadership, exercising integrity and selflessness as well as providing mentorship to your subordinates,” Brigadier  Monnatlhare said.

Original photo by Gerald van der Walt

Stray rhinos back in park (Zambia)

By Rescue and rehab
Tumfweko | October 22, 2019

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The Zambian Department of National Parks and Wildlife has secured two white rhinos that had strayed out of Mosi-Oa-Tunya National Park in Livingstone and went as far as Kazungula district. The two female rhinos aged seven and five are Lubinda and Lucy respectively.

Ministry of Tourism and Arts Public Relations Officer, Sakabilo Kalembwe says the department made several attempts to herd them back to the park but they continued to drift further away from the park into apparent hot poaching spots in Katombora and Kazungula.

Original photo as published by Tumfweko.

Mr. Kalembwe says it was at this moment when the scale of threats of poaching and safety of the animals became more apparent that the department and other well-wishers put resources together to have the elusive rhinos safely returned to the park.

He told ZNBC News in a statement that the Wildlife Veterinary Unit of the Department was called in from Chilanga to quickly capture the rhinos and translocate them back to the park.

Mr. Kalembwe said the Unit expertly immobilized the rhinos, loaded them on a truck and transported them back into the park where they were released. He said Lubinda and Lucy have since joined the other rhinos in the park.

The Mosi Oa Tunya National Park has a total of 10 white rhinos. Mr. Kalembwe further said it is not clear why the rhinos left the park but the diminished natural food resources due to drought or climate change in the park cannot be ruled out despite the provision of supplementary food like hay and Lucerne.

American billionaire meets Lungu, pledges investments (Zambia)

By Conservation, Land conservation
The Lusaka Times | September 25, 2019

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A renowned American billionaire has shown interest in setting up a world-class private wildlife estate or game ranch around the Kafue National Park.

Paul Jones confirmed his investment pledge when he met with President Edgar Lungu on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York last evening.

Mr. Jones informed President Lungu that he has done a detailed investment plan for the wildlife project in Zambia although the Department of National Parks and Wildlife has not yet cleared his proposal.

He said he has proposed to government for an equity partnership in the running of the game ranch to facilitate a win-win situation for both parties.

Mr. Jones has since appealed to President Lungu to intervene in the prolonged delay by the Department of National Parks and Wildlife to grant him the game ranching licence.

The American investor further said he has similar ranching ventures in other African countries such as South Africa, Tanzania and Zimbabwe and hopes to do the same in Zambia.

Mr. Jones, who is chairman of Tudor Investment Corporation, disclosed that he plans to re-stock white rhinos in the Game Ranch and Kafue National Park once granted the wildlife licence. And in responding to Mr. Jones’ investment pledge, President Lungu assured the American investor that he will direct Tourism Minister Ronald Chitotela to urgently look into the matter.

The President however said he will not interfere in the operations of the State institutions regarding delays in the issuance of the game ranching licence to Mr Jones but instead allow the due process of law to be followed.

He advised the American investor to immediately engage with relevant authorities so that whatever challenges were being faced in relation to his proposed game ranching project were resolved expeditiously. President Lungu further emphasised his government’s desire to attract tangible investment in various sectors of the economy. President Lungu is part of other world leaders attending the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

The President is also holding bilateral meetings and engaging prospective foreign investors wishing to invest in Zambia as part of the side events to the UN General Assembly.