By Gia Kaplan
Law enforcement officials in Vietnam aren’t effectively dealing with the trade, consumption and smuggling of rhino horn, non-governmental organisation Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV) said on Monday.
ENV coordinator Ninh Thj Phuong Thao spoke to Talk Radio 702’s John Robbie about the group’s anti-poaching fact-finding mission to South Africa.
Last week, a delegation from Vietnam visited the Kruger National Park in a bid to raise awareness about rhino poaching and its effects in Southern Africa.
Included in the delegation was a National Assembly member, the environmental police, a famous journalist and a comedian.
The trip was funded and arranged by the Rhinose Foundation.
Thao said she hopes through reports from the trip, the National Assembly member will have an influence in helping to strengthen law enforcement when it comes to prosecuting offenders.
Last week, the deputy chief of Vietnam’s environmental police said only five people have been arrested in Vietnam for smuggling wildlife this year.
Suspects face a jail sentence of between five and seven years.
She said the consumption of rhino horn in Vietnam is primary limited to a small group of wealthy people.
At present, 100 grams of rhino horn costs about R50,000 in Vietnam.
This has made the rare commodity a symbol of status amongst the country’s affluent class. More....