By Edgar Gweshe
The Zimbabwe Conservation Taskforce (ZCTF) on Wednesday submitted a petition against the sale of baby elephants to the environment minister, Saviour Kasukuwere.
There was an outcry from conservationists last year when news broke out that Zimbabwe had rounded up dozens of baby elephants reportedly for sale to China and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The capture of the baby elephants was reported by the ZCTF following investigations at Hwange National Park.
According to the ZCTF, at least 36 elephants, 10 lions and 10 sable antelopes were captured.
The elephants are reported to be between two and a half and. five years old The ZCTF contends that separating the baby elephants from their mothers is emotionally traumatic and physically dangerous.
However, Kasukuwere is on record claiming that there was nothing wrong with the sale of the baby elephants as this has been done several times before.
Rodrigues told The Zimbabwean in an interview today that they had managed to get over 200, 000 signatures from people around the world who were against the sale of the baby elephants.
“We handed the petition today to Minister Kasukuwere and we are now waiting to hear the response from the government. The petition highlighted our concern over animal welfare and why we think that the sale of the baby elephants should be stopped,” said Rodrigues.
He added: “The petition was also handed to the permanent secretary in the ministry of environment. In total, we had about 200, 000 signatures from people who are concerned over the sale of the baby elephants.”
Rodrigues said the government needed to treat the issue of animal welfare seriously.