Kunene conservancies want lions for trophy hunting

18 Jul 2017 18:10pm
WINDHOEK, 18 JUL (NAMPA) – The Kunene Regional Community Conservancy Association (KRCCA) wants lions and elephant quotas for trophy hunting to auction on the international market and reduce the human-wildlife conflict.
KRCCA Chairperson, Gustaph Tjiundukamba told Nampa on Tuesday they about a fortnight ago requested as such from the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET) through a petition.
He said apart from generating income for the community, the quotas will help reduce the growing lion population in the Kunene, which has resulted in an increase in human-wildlife conflict, especially in the Sesfontein Constituency.
“We requested in our petition to the minister that we should be given these animals in our yearly quotas so that it will benefit the conservancies as we are directly affected,” said Tjiundukamba.
Ehi-rovipuka Conservancy Chairperson, Asser Ujaha told Nampa on Tuesday that compensating farmers who lose their cattle to the predators is not always easy.
“We really find it hard to compensate farmers for their loss as the money we as conservancies receive from Government at many times is delayed,” Ujaha said.
The KRCCA two weeks ago at an Annual General Assembly in Otjokavare submitted their petition to the MET through Sesfontein Constituency Councillor, Julius Kaujova. The main concern of the petition was the human-wildlife conflict caused by lions in the Kunene.
Kaujova confirmed to Nampa on Tuesday that the petition has reached the office of Minister Pohamba Shifeta, whom he said promised to visit the region soon.
Shifeta, at a media conference in Windhoek on Monday, acknowledged the human-wildlife conflict caused by lions in Namibia, saying there are efforts to reduce the lion population in areas where they pose danger to humans and livestock.
Shifeta said the estimated lion population in Namibia stands at 700, of which 430 are in the Etosha National Park and surrounding commercial farms; 120 in the Kunene and parts of the Erongo regions; 50 in the Khaudum National Park and surrounding areas of the Kavango East and Otjozondjupa Region; 50 in the Zambezi Region; and the rest on other commercial farms.
One of the reduction management strategies to address human-wildlife conflict, Shifeta said, includes trophy hunting and relocating the animals to areas where it is deemed they will cause no conflict.