South African Members of Parliament (MPs) on Thursday voiced support for the introduction of a strictly limited and regulated trade mechanism for rhino horns.
Only through such mechanism, legal horn from legitimate stockpiles, and not harvested horns, are sourced, the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Water and Environmental Affairs (PCWEA) said in a statement.
The committee stressed the need to incentivize the strictly limited and regulated trade and possession of rhino as a live commodity.
The statement was issued after members of the committee met in Skukuza, the Kruger National Park (KNP) in northeastern South Africa from Dec. 2 to 4 to get a better understanding of the current situation relating to the illegal killing and conservation of rhinos in the country and to debate and seek possible solutions to the rhino poaching challenges.
The workshop came as the number of rhinos poached for their horns in South Africa increased to 919 since the beginning of this year.
The KNP has born the brunt of the scourge, loosing 560 rhinos during the period, with the provincial figures standing at a total of 359.
The total number of suspected poachers arrested has increased to 316.
The South African government has advocated a feasible model for trade in rhino horns in the broader context of a myriad of interventions being implemented to address the scourge of rhino poaching.
The government says it does not view trade as a panacea for the on-going scourge, but it is part of a number of measures to be implemented. More....