By Simon Bloch
Support for an online campaign calling for an end to the trade in lion bones has surged to a new record.
In an incredible leap of faith that speaks volumes for worldwide concern over the future and fate of African lions, the global online Avaaz advocacy campaign that calls for South Africa to end the trade, announced this week that its campaign support had virtually surged overnight, mushrooming to a record new high of more than a million signatures.
And now Avaaz, which has the backing of more than 27 million members globally, is asking for another tidal wave of support to reach 1.25 million voices.
This firmly puts the heat on the South African government to end the much reviled canned lion hunting industry and clarify its national position on conservation which currently allows the export of lion bones and carcasses to Asia where they are ground into powder as a cake mix.
The surge in momentum comes after the Johannesburg High Court ruled in Avaaz’s favour recently on controversial campaign posters.
The court ruling injected new life into the campaign, which collected more than 250 000 additional signatures in less than a week.
In August last year, Airports Company SA, worried about a political backlash that would turn into a public relations nightmare, demanded that the advertising arm of media giant Primedia pull down the Avaaz posters at OR Tambo Airport within 24 hours.
The posters show a lioness looking down the barrel of a gun with an image of a thoughtful President Jacob Zuma superimposed in the background. More....