SHARE
A rhino conservation plan has been drafted by African states to expand rhino populations and to reduce levels of poaching. Source: Armand Hough

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa’s Minister of Environmental Affairs, Dr Edna Molewa, says African states are committed to securing viable and growing rhino populations across the African landscape.

Yesterday, Molewa said African Range States had participated in three workshops over the last two years to develop a continental African Range State’s African Rhino Conservation Plan.

“The continental Range States’ plan does not seek to duplicate existing more detailed national rhino plans; but rather seeks to complement them by providing an overarching higher-level umbrella plan under which all the national plans can fit,” she said Molewa.

“The continental plan also seeks to identify and focus on areas where collectively and cooperatively there may be opportunities for range States to work together to enhance rhino conservation (such as enhancing effective funding for conservation, increasing cooperative sharing and analysis of intelligence information, and boosting political will and support for rhino conservation across the continent),” added the minister.

While there had been conservation successes to celebrate, the Range States recognise that there is a need to cooperate to further enhance the conservation of rhino on the continent and to effectively address illegal trade in wildlife. This Range States plan seeks to complement national conservation plans by providing an overarching higher level umbrella plan under which all the national plans can fit.

The continental plan also seeks to identify and focus on areas where collectively and cooperatively there may be opportunities for Range States to work together to enhance rhino conservation (such as enhancing effective funding for conservation, increasing cooperative sharing and analysis of intelligence information, and boosting political will and support for rhino conservation across the continent).

The Range States furthermore recognise the differing conservation philosophies and therefore deliberately focused on general principles and approaches that all range States can support and agree on for the good of rhino conservation across Africa.

“We would like to call on donors to support the implementation of national rhino conservation plans as well as the implementation of this range States Conservation plan,” said Molewa.

– African News Agency