Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Members of Parliament meet to find solution on human-animal conflict

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Minister of Tourism, Rodney Sikumba yesterday met with Members of Parliament to find an amicable solution to challenges of human-animal conflict that have affected the country in the recent past.

Mr Sikumba noted that it is important for parliamentarians and Government to have dialogue over issues of human animal conflict.

Speaking whenhe met the members of Parliamentary Caucus on Wildlife Conservation, the Minister said instead of just tabling the matters before the floor of the House, a roundtable discussion is necessary for various stakeholders to appreciate the problems obtaining on the ground.

He said parliamentarians need to be involved more in resolving the issues collectively.

Mr Sikumba revealed that his ministry has resolved to make parliamentarians Honorary Wildlife Police Officers.

“My team and I this morning discussed that when we sit in the next five days or so, each and every one of you in the caucus will have to be honorary wildlife police officers. That we will expedite and we want you to be getting into the park at any given time to check on what is happening,” he said.

The Minister disclosed that the country only has 1,575 wildlife police officers across the country.

Mr Sikumba however said there is still a deficit of 4,800 wildlife police officers.

The Minister also bemoaned illegal activities in Game Management Areas like mining which he said exacerbates the human-animal conflict.

And different members of the Parliamentary Caucus on Wildlife Conservation bemoaned several issues of human animal conflict in their respective constituencies.

Katombola Member of Parliament, Clement Andeleki said elephants have been killing people and destroying crops making the situation susceptible to food insecurity.

Feira Member of Parliament, Emmanuel Tembo who also complained of an influx of elephants in his constituency accused wildlife police officers of acting swiftly when a person is found erring, a case which he said is not the same when people are under attack from animals.

And Bweengwa Member of Parliament, Kasautu Michelo complained of mining activities in Lochinver National Park saying the sound of machinery chases away animals.

“There is a company which is mining gypsum in my area and it’s like most of the animals have run away because of the noise. Our wildlife is being threatened,” he said.

8 COMMENTS

  1. There must be involvement of qualified specialists from environmental experts MP’s alone do not have the capacity to deal with this issue alone.

  2. Wild animals cannot live in harmony with Humans. One of them has to be moved away from the other. That’s the only solution

    • Well let’s start by moving Stup!d KZ – although I wouldn’t know whether to qualify him as a human or an animal; I suspect the latter.

  3. I just don’t like the quality of debates in the house. Young MPs are trying to fight the speaker instead of concentrating on real issues. The Vice President has continued on the path left by the immediate past vice President. Answers like, when are you disbursing CDF Answer is soon, When are you paying agro dealers, Answer is soon. When are you making kasumbalesa border post a 24 hour border, answer is soon. All answers are too general and these are just examples, there are many more that are responded in this manner, and non of the MPs rises to say my question is not answered

  4. Why are MPs in Zambia not asking the Minister of Health why face masks are worn as necklaces or chin laces and there is no sensitization, In Zambia even if there is an establishment with a poster saying no face mask no entry, even if you carry the face mask in your hands, or wear it around your neck and not covering your mouth and nose, you will enter. What they want to see is a face mask whether worn or not

  5. I hope the MPs will find a solution, going by the low quality of debates in parliament, I am not getting comfort that this will be resolved. And also the general responses from the VP are not encouraging. There was time that she gave the same answer to 3 different questions and I am sure this is in the hansard. When agro farmers would be paid, when CDF would be disbursed, when transport would be paid, these three questions had the same answer of soon. This is an answer that anybody can give – soon, soon, soon. Ne detail at all, no specifics

  6. If people near game areas are let more to build and settle anywhere they like rather than in designated places expect more conflicts with animals.Animals feel threatened the closer human beings get closer to them.The same could happen with mining companies setting up mining activities in game areas.

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