The Suspects in custody
South African arrested for trying to smuggle wildlife to South Africa

Caritas Zambia has expressed concerned that people given the responsibility of protecting wildlife are encouraging illegal trade through dubious deals in hunting licenses and concessions on timber.

Caritas Zambia Acting Director Eugene Kabilika has also said the development can only be curbed if the local communities begin to be part of a comprehensive programme meant to protect wildlife.

“Curbing illegal wildlife trade should not be done in isolation. It should be part of the larger programme of caring for the environment that prioritising equity for the benefit of Zambians, especially the communities living near game management areas and forests” Mr. Kabilika said.

He added that his organisation believes that the protection of wildlife should be for every Zambian.

“Zero tolerance for illegal wild life trade- Lets unite and fight cannot be a reality if our current trends of consumption and damaging of the earth continue. In fact, her ability to support life, as we know it today will collapse in the next 50 years or more. Global illegal trade on wildlife has taken a major toll on the world’s endangered species” he said.

in Zambia, the rate of poaching and cutting of trees exceeds the natural regeneration of the population of animals and trees


Mr. Kabilika in addition said that in Zambia, the rate of poaching and cutting of trees exceeds the natural regeneration of the population of animals and trees thereby pushing threatened species to extinction.
“Engaging local communities to care for wild life is recognised as a key approach to tackling the illegal wildlife trade. Before game management areas were designed, there used to be more than one million animals in the Kafue flats alone.
Bird species were so numerous and so many. But, now all these numbers have gone down. As long as communities in Zambia, especially those who live near game management areas and forests, do not see these resources as their own and devoid of their local economy, poaching and indiscriminate cutting of trees will continue. We need to design programmes that will support alternative livelihoods of communities living in these areas and also make the economic value of wildlife to be part of the community’s local economy. Then, the community themselves will become the game rangers” He advised.

In a message to mark Word Environment Day which falls on 5th June, Mr. Kabilika added that appealed for steps to protect mother earth by stopping all forms of burning, cutting of trees, poisoning nature and environment.

The Caritas Zambia Acting Director further called for a stop to fishing using mosquito nets, killing wild life and make mother Earth happy and productive again.

And on large scale agriculture and mining, Mr. Kabilika has said the practice is known to be the largest contributors to the destruction of biodiversity and eco-systems, thereby slowly creating the necessary conditions for climate change and squeezing the natural habitats of wildlife, especially animals.

“The use of pesticides and clearance of large areas of forests renders the soils bare and polluted and in the case of mining completely unusable. Although in the short term mining and large scale agriculture may present themselves as solution for increased economic growth, the cost involved to sustain such practices are high both in economic and environmental terms” He added.

He has since reiterated Pope Francis’s Pope Francis request to nourish and sustain the earth, so that it can in turn nourish and sustain humanity.

Meanwhile Caritas Zambia has said that the starting point in searching for solutions affecting planet earth today should be spiritual rather than scientific.

Making reference to Pope Francis’ encyclical on the environment dubbed, “Laudato Si’ where he praises God for the gift of the earth and all its resources, Mr. Kabilika said people’s failures are associated to over-consumption and to equitably share the gifts of creation adding that the development has dire
consequences for the poor and the planet itself.
Zambia commemorated world environmental day under the theme Zero Tolerance for Illegal Wildlife Trade- Lets Unite and Fight while the global Theme was 7 billion dreams. One planet. Consume with Care. For the prevention of illegal trade in wildlife.

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9 COMMENTS

  1. But people are poaching and cutting down trees seeing that the rulers are becoming rich in 18 months of being in power. What do you expect?

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    • The government is to blame. People cut trees, kill wildlife, over-fish partly because of ignorance, and mainly because of desperation. It’s the government’s responsibility to educate the people about deforestation, pass strict laws regarding the cutting of trees, fishing, and hunting; and also provide alternative sources of energy. It also calls for the general improvement of the economy in the affected areas, so people can have other sources of livelihood.

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  2. And we have a **** for tourism minister in the name of Jean Kapata dishing out hunting liciences for big cats.

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  3. That is the overall picture for PF rule.

    Only roads were they were stealing were being built, every thing else is in decline.

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  4. killing a small antelope for the pot is not poaching. Actually, there is no local word in Zambian dialects for poaching. What is poaching to a citizen of Chief Nabwalya whose generations have lived as peasant hunters? This is a foreign word imposed on people living in poor rural communities. It has been a way of life which of course is being changed due to sensitization from organisations like CARITAS funded by Westerners. You are advocating for our people to change their way of life. Your funders killed all their duikers ‘out there’ and now they are telling you and me not eat them so that when they come out here to get rid of their stress they can photograph them. It is absurd to say the least!

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    • Your ancestors once also walked in animal skins and wore no cloths or shoes. Now you all wear cloths and shoes.

      It’s called development. Well come to the 21st century.

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  5. WHAT SHOCKS ME EVERY TIME I GO TO ZAMBIA IS THE RATE AT WHICH TREES ARE BEING DEPLETED FROM ONCE UPON A TIME THICK FORESTS. IF LAND WERE FLAT, ONE CAN STAND AT LUSAKA AND STILL SEE KITWE TOWNS SO CLEARLY. IT IS LIKELY THERE’S NO MINISTRY IN ZAMBIA RESPONSIBLE FOR THE PRESERVATION OF OUR FORESTS.

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