by Ismail Obaray MPL – DA Spokesperson of Environment and Nature Conservation
Date: 07 July 2017
Type: Press Statement
The DA is shocked by reports of two more rhino killings in the Northern Cape and has submitted a letter to the chairperson of the portfolio committee on Environment and Nature Conservation to convene a special meeting with both the department and SAPS in order to address rhino safety in the province.
Reports of the slaughter of two rhino in the Colesberg vicinity come just a week after the revelation that eight rhinos were massacred on a farm in the Kimberley vicinity.
It appears that the Northern Cape is fast becoming the new hunting fields for ruthless rhino poachers, who are capitalising on the relocation of rhino to this province.
Since it came to light in 2014 that over 200 rhino were to be moved to the Northern Cape, the DA has consistently been raising the issue of rhino safety with the provincial department. Their response, however, has always been nonchalant and dispassionate.
This has to change. We simply cannot accept that what was meant to become the rhino’s safe haven is becoming their new danger zone.
The legislature may be on recess and constituency leave until the end of the month but this is an issue that simply cannot wait. The portfolio committee needs to meet with both the Environment and Nature Conservation Department and the police without delay in order to ascertain what measures have been put in place to apprehend the suspects and to increase security of the remaining rhino in the province.
We need all hands on deck if we are to prevent the extinction of the rhino population.
Extraordinary measures must immediately be explored to beef up rural safety. This should include utilising the Northern Cape’s defence force wing to assist in protecting the rhino species.
Ismail Obaray MPL
DA Spokesperson of Environment and Nature Conservation
082 380 2128
Shelley De Witt
082 847 1387