BY THE HON. MR NAREND SINGH MP
CHIEF WHIP: INKATHA FREEDOM PARTY
On Sunday two foreign nationals were caught leaving South Africa with five million Rands’ worth of rhino horn hidden in their luggage. That’s the tip of the iceberg. This year alone, 477 rhinos have fallen to poachers. In KwaZulu Natal, we lost 23 in just 12 days.
Tragically, our anti-poaching victories in the Kruger National Park have simply relocated the battle.
With our country still losing 3 rhinos a day, we dare not cut budgets and think we are winning. Within a few short years, there will be no rhino left unless Government acts across the board.
Treasury must count the cost to our country of illegal rhino horn trafficking.
Tourism must count the future cost of lost revenue.
Justice must create circuit courts in all districts where protected areas occur.
Police must investigate the nefarious syndicates who are operating freely.
Safety and Security must refit our military with green berets to defend our natural heritage.
Environmental Affairs must study the pros and cons of dealing with existing stockpiles of legal horn.
Communities living around protected areas must receive incentives and training to become partners in this fight.
Honourable Speaker, through Project Rhino KZN, a million youth are calling on us to stop the slaughter now. If we fail, their generation will never see a wild rhino.
A year from now, our progress will be judged at the World Youth Wildlife Summit hosted by SANPARKS. Let us give them reason to hope.
I thank you.
Hon Narend Singh, MP
IFP Chief Whip in Parliament
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