Parliamentary Question: Rhino poachers

1091

Mr. G R Morgan (DA) to ask the Minister of Water and Environmental Affairs:

(1) (a) How many rhinos have been killed by poachers since 1 January 2010 and (b) what was the location of each incident;
(2) whether any staff of the (a) SA National Parks or (b) any provincial parks (i) are being investigated or (ii) have been arrested for involvement in the poaching of rhinos; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details;
(3) Whether any (a) poachers of and (b) dealers in rhino horn have been arrested since 1 January 2010; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details;
(4) whether she intends introducing amending legislation with regard to the maximum penalties for individuals convicted of involvement in poaching activities; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Mr G R Morgan (DA)

SECRETARY TO PARLIAMENT

HANSARD

PAPERS OFFICE

PRESS
1372. THE MINISTER OF WATER AND ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS ANSWERS:
(1) (a) 92
(b) The attached table indicates the number of rhinos that have been killed by poachers since 1 January 2010 per province in which the incidents took place.
   SANParks Province Private

SANParks

Province

Private

Black

White

Black

White

Black

White

Total

KNP

0

33

0

0

0

0

33

Gauteng

0

0

0

2

0

10

12

Limpopo

0

0

0

0

0

8

8

Mpumalanga

0

0

0

5

0

3

8

North West

0

0

1

15

0

2

18

East Cape

0

0

0

0

0

2

2

Free State

0

0

0

2

0

1

3

KZN

0

0

2

5

1

0

8

West Cape

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

North Cape

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

33

3

29

1

26

92

(2) a) A Kruger National Park traffic officer is the only staff member that was arrested on 12 December 2008 for dealing in rhino horn. The case is still before the courts pending finalisation.
(b) An officer of one of the provincial conservation authorities are being investigated at the moment but due to the sensitivity of the case no further information can be released at this time.
(3) Yes. Several arrests as detailed below have been effected by the joint operation involving the South African Police Service Organised Crime Unit, SANParks, provisional conservation authorities and the National Prosecuting Authority.

SANParks (KNP) 17 (14 – Illegal hunt rhino & 3 Dealing in rhino horn)

Gauteng 5 (4 – Illegal hunt rhino & 1 Illegal possession of rhino horn)

Mpumalanga 3 (3 – Illegal hunt rhino)

Eastern Cape   0

Limpopo         0

North West     0

Free State        0

KZN                0

Western Cape  0



Northern Cape 0
(4) The penalties for individuals convicted of involvement in poaching activities concerning listed Threatened or Protected Species (TOPS) in accordance with the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act (NEMBA) have already been amended in 2009 and the relevant penalties in the TOPS regulations will be amended in line with those of NEMBA during 2010.