Controversy grows over elephant auction
Controversy grows over elephant auction

Controversy grows over elephant auction

Herma Prinsloo
ELLANIE SMIT

WINDHOEK

It has been a year since Namibia first announced it would put 170 elephants on auction and since then the controversy surrounding the matter has only grown.

The environment ministry announced in August 2020 that it would capture 57 elephants for sale to undisclosed buyers, adding that 42 of them would be exported.

News of the auctioning of 170 elephants broke in December 2020 and caused an uproar.

However, despite the opposition, the ministry went ahead with the elephant auction and sold the 57 elephants for N$5.9 million.

What has made matters worse is the ministry’s refusal to release any further details on the issue, including the names of the international buyers or even to what countries the elephants will be exported.

Even though this is a public procurement process, the ministry has remained adamant that the successful bidders will only be announced “at the end of the process.”

This has led to much speculation and several complaints by conservation groups to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites) that Namibia is not complying with international laws.

According to the Pro Elephant Network (PREN), several elephant family groups have already been captured in Namibia and are in quarantine, ready for export.

It says these elephants will most likely be exported to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), with a South African wildlife trader involved.

“The UAE does not have an in-situ population of elephants. It has already imported wild elephants from Namibia who are kept in captivity,” it says.

“The elephants are destined for two captive locations in the United Arab Emirates,” PREN states.

Legal route

Now, a South African environmental law firm, Cullinan and Associates, has stepped in to make a legal case.

A memorandum submitted to the UAE Cites, the Cites secretary-general and relevant stakeholders concludes that it is illegal for “the Namibia Cites to issue an export permit under either Appendix I or Appendix II of Cites”.

It further says that it is illegal for a country outside of the range states for the African elephant to issue an import permit.

The memorandum explains that Appendix II does not apply to export, given that wild elephants are being exported out of their range and therefore does not meet the specific non-detriment criterion in Article III for trade in Appendix I species.

Namibia recently confirmed to Cites that its trade in live African elephants will take place under Article III of the Convention and that it will fully comply with its requirements.

Several ecological and scientific arguments have been made by renowned conservationists who said that wild-caught elephants from Namibia or other South African nations, when transported outside their range, will in no way promote the conservation of the African elephant population.

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Namibian Sun 2024-05-27

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Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 353.63/OZ UP +0.70% | Copper US$ 4.80/lb UP +1.35% | Zinc US$ 3 077.30/T UP 0.19% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 83.32/BBP UP +1.20% | Platinum US$ 1 055.12/OZ UP +2.42% Sport results: LaLiga: Sevilla 1 vs 2 Barcelona | Celta Vigo 2 vs 2 Valencia | Las Palmas 1 vs 1 Deportivo Alaves | Getafe 1 vs 2 Mallorca | Real Madrid 0 vs 0 Real Betis | Almería 6 vs 1 Cadiz | Rayo Vallecano 0 vs 1 Athletic Club | Real Sociedad 0 vs 2 Atletico Madrid | Osasuna 1 vs 1 Villarreal | Girona 7 vs 0 Granada SerieA: SS Lazio 1 vs 1 Sassuolo | Hellas Verona 2 vs 2 Inter Milan | Empoli 2 vs 1 AS Roma | Frosinone 0 vs 1 Udinese | Atalanta 3 vs 0 Torino | Napoli 0 vs 0 Lecce | AC Milan 3 vs 3 Salernitana | Juventus 2 vs 0 Monza | Genoa 2 vs 0 Bologna European Championships Qualifying: Leeds United 0 vs 1 Southampton FA Cup: Manchester City 1 vs 2 Manchester United English Championship: Leeds United 0 vs 1 Southampton Weather: Katima Mulilo: 11° | 30° Rundu: 11° | 30° Eenhana: 13° | 31° Oshakati: 14° | 30° Ruacana: 15° | 31° Tsumeb: 14° | 28° Otjiwarongo: 12° | 27° Omaruru: 14° | 29° Windhoek: 11° | 24° Gobabis: 12° | 25° Henties Bay: 17° | 25° Wind speed: 47km/h, Wind direction: NE, Low tide: 11:38, High tide: 05:37, Low Tide: 00:10, High tide: 18:15 Swakopmund: 16° | 18° Wind speed: 28km/h, Wind direction: NE, Low tide: 11:36, High tide: 05:35, Low Tide: 00:08, High tide: 18:13 Walvis Bay: 16° | 23° Wind speed: 34km/h, Wind direction: NE, Low tide: 11:36, High tide: 05:34, Low Tide: 00:08, High tide: 18:12 Rehoboth: 13° | 26° Mariental: 14° | 28° Keetmanshoop: 15° | 28° Aranos: 14° | 28° Lüderitz: 17° | 33° Ariamsvlei: 15° | 29° Oranjemund: 19° | 31° Luanda: 23° | 27° Gaborone: 11° | 24° Lubumbashi: 10° | 26° Mbabane: 10° | 23° Maseru: 6° | 21° Antananarivo: 9° | 21° Lilongwe: 11° | 26° Maputo: 17° | 27° Windhoek: 11° | 24° Cape Town: 14° | 24° Durban: 14° | 23° Johannesburg: 13° | 20° Dar es Salaam: 22° | 29° Lusaka: 14° | 24° Harare: 10° | 24° Economic Indicators: Currency: GBP to NAD 23.39 | EUR to NAD 19.91 | CNY to NAD 2.53 | USD to NAD 18.34 | DZD to NAD 0.14 | AOA to NAD 0.02 | BWP to NAD 1.31 | EGP to NAD 0.38 | KES to NAD 0.14 | NGN to NAD 0.01 | ZMW to NAD 0.68 | ZWL to NAD 0.04 | BRL to NAD 3.56 | RUB to NAD 0.21 | INR to NAD 0.22 | USD to DZD 134.3 | USD to AOA 851.84 | USD to BWP 13.58 | USD to EGP 47.12 | USD to KES 132.48 | USD to NGN 1474 | USD to ZAR 18.34 | USD to ZMW 26.81 | USD to ZWL 321 | Stock Exchange: JSE All Share Index 79150.84 Up +0.25% | Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX) Overall Index 1748.47 Down -0.71% | Casablanca Stock Exchange (CSE) MASI 13370.7 Down -0.04% | Egyptian Exchange (EGX) 30 Index 27205.14 Down -0.08% | Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) DCI 9141.35 Same 0 | NSX: MTC 7.75 SAME | Anirep 8.99 SAME | Capricorn Investment group 17.34 SAME | FirstRand Namibia Ltd 49 DOWN 0.50% | Letshego Holdings (Namibia) Ltd 4.1 UP 2.50% | Namibia Asset Management Ltd 0.7 SAME | Namibia Breweries Ltd 31.49 UP 0.03% | Nictus Holdings - Nam 2.22 SAME | Oryx Properties Ltd 12.1 UP 1.70% | Paratus Namibia Holdings 11.99 SAME | SBN Holdings 8.45 SAME | Trustco Group Holdings Ltd 0.48 SAME | B2Gold Corporation 47.34 DOWN 1.50% | Local Index closed 677.62 UP 0.12% | Overall Index closed 1534.6 DOWN 0.05% | Osino Resources Corp 19.47 DOWN 2.41% | Commodities: Gold US$ 2 353.63/OZ UP +0.70% | Copper US$ 4.80/lb UP +1.35% | Zinc US$ 3 077.30/T UP 0.19% | Brent Crude Oil US$ 83.32/BBP UP +1.20% | Platinum US$ 1 055.12/OZ UP +2.42%