MET and private sector increases reward for poachers

12 May 2015 08:20am
WINDHOEK, 12 MAY (NAMPA) – The Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) and the private sector is offering N.dollars 160 000 to anyone who can provide information that will lead to the arrest of poachers in Namibia.
The MET increased its reward from N.dollars 30 000 to N.dollars 60 000, while the private sector is offering N.dollars 100 000.
The offer comes as about 60 rhinos and 23 elephants fell victim to the illegal practice since the beginning of the year countrywide.
At a media briefing on Monday, the Minister of Environment and Tourism Pohamba Shifeta announced that the ministry has doubled its reward after N.dollars 30 000 was offered since October last year.
“MET and the Protected Resources Unit of the Namibian Police has made an offer to the public that anyone that will provide information that will lead to the arrest of these poachers of our wildlife in Etosha National Park and elsewhere will be rewarded with N.dollars 30 000.
“I want to further inform the general public that we have now decided to increase this reward by doubling it. Anyone that will provide the ministry or police with that information will now be rewarded with N.dollars 60 000,” he stressed.
Another N.dollars 100 000 is also on offer from the private sector for any information that would lead to the arrest of any poachers, professional hunter and photographer Jofie Lamprecht told Nampa on the sidelines of the same meeting.
Role players who donated to the cause include the Next Generation Conservation Trust, Game Rangers Association of Africa, Namibian Chapter, Wildlife Angel, Namibian Professional Hunters Association and private individuals, according to Lamprecht.
The ministry has been working with other law enforcement and conservation agencies to put strategic measures in place to stop the current poaching and illegal trade in wildlife and wildlife products.
The short and long-term measures involve issues of human capacity, surveillance, patrolling and detection.
According Shifeta, it is just a matter of time before poachers face the law.
The ministry has already made breakthroughs in some cases, especially in the north-eastern parts of the country where about six suspects have also been arrested for the crime.
Other cases are being closely monitored and the ministry is working closely with wildlife authorities in neighbouring countries, the minister said.
Shifeta indicated that the ministry will continue to provide benchmarks that are critical for developing comprehensive, systematic and integrated investigations and intelligence operations for rhino and elephant poaching.
“We continue to invest more resources in combating illegal hunting of our rhinos and elephants. The situation can be described as a priority crime and therefore more resources need to be invested in our efforts to stop these illegal activities,” he added.