Zimparks receives boats for anti-poaching activities

By Mhlomuli Ncube

THE Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority (ZIMPARKS) anti-poaching activities have received a major boost after getting three patrol boats under the one million euro COVID-19 relief fund for the tourism sector.

The fund is granted to countries in the Kavango – Zambezi Trans-frontier Conservation Area (KAZA) by the Germany government.

The thrust is to ensure conservation at a time the country is confronted with realities of human wildlife conflict, poaching and other vices that de-stabilise the harmonious management of nature.

“This is at a very critical time. Acts such as poaching and human wildlife conflict are a national issue and must be addressed,” said Mr Felton Mangwanya, Zimparks Director General.

The COVID-19 relief package is also expected to assist in the recovery of the tourism sector.

“Zimbabwe is benefitting as one of the countries in the KAZA. It is total contribution to the KAZA is over 14 percent,” said Mrs Netsai Bollmann, KAZA Secretariat Programme Manage.

Determination by government is not only to ensure wildlife is protected but ensure communities derive sustainable livelihoods from flora.

“COVID-19 affected communities and the tourism sector. This is an important step in the sector’s comeback,” said Hon Barbara Rwodzi, Deputy Minister of Climate, Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry.

As part of the national anti-poaching strategy, the boats will be deployed on Lake Kariba.