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Problematic animals in hunting quota - minister

23 Mar 2023

Ministry of Environment and Tourism has included problematic wild animals in the community trusts’ hunting quota in an effort to address the human wildlife conflict.

Environment and tourism minister, Ms Phildah  Kereng said this when she was responding to comments and issues raised by some MPs on the ministry’s proposed estimates for the 2022/2023 financial year on Tuesday March 21.

Minister Kereng said the inclusion of such species would promote wildlife monitoring by local community trusts with the intent to reduce human/wildlife conflicts.

She said the ministry, in collaboration with local authorities, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), development partners and the private sector, continued to mobilise communities to play an active role in conservation of natural resources as well as wildlife management.

“The ministry continues to sensitise communities on the human/wildlife co-existence through public education awareness programmes,” she added.

Again, she told MPs that the ministry was undertaking maintenance and provision of infrastructure such as water for wildlife within the protected areas as well as the development and implementation of species management plans, particularly for high value species such as elephants, rhinos and leopards.

Parliament further heard that compensation rates paid in respect of claims made for damage caused to property and livestock by wild animals were also under review with guidelines to be completed shortly.

Further, she indicated that development of community wildlife conservation projects such as Khuis Tourism Park, community camp site in Khawa as well as an entrance gate to the Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park were some of the ministry’s plans to address human/wildlife conflict.

She further said Community-Based Natural Resources Management programme was also developed to facilitate partnership between local communities and government to conserve natural resources while also giving local communities unswerving rights to natural resources.

Earlier, Boteti West MP, Mr Slumber Tsogwane affirmed government’s commitment to promoting local participation in the tourism industry.

Mr Tsogwane, however, urged the minister to put more emphasis on waste management and implement the Integrated Waste Management Policy.

He was also of the view that some annual events such as  Khawa Dune Challenge be transformed into year-long events rather than once in a year as was currently the case.

Selebi Phikwe East MP, Mr Kgoberego Nkawana pleaded with the ministry to equip trusts members with the necessary skills to ensure that resources they owned benefitted their communities.

Tati East MP, Dr Douglas Letsholathebe implored the ministry to enhance protection, preservation and promotion of Botswana’s cultural and natural heritage.

Subsequently, Parliament approved the ministry’s proposed budget of over P1.4 billion, which comprised of over P923.9 million for the recurrent budget and over P550 million for developments. Ends

Source : BOPA

Author : Thato Mosinyi

Location : GABORONE

Event : Parliament March 2023

Date : 23 Mar 2023