PDM condemns BDF

All anti-poaching methods must be developed and carried out in a manner in which wildlife and human life are equally respected, Ngaringombe said.

17 November 2020 | Local News

JEMIMA BEUKES







WINDHOEK

The Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) has condemned Botswana’s ‘shoot to kill’ policy which has taken the lives of 37 Namibians, including three fishermen from Zambezi Region and a Zambian national last week.

The fishermen, brothers Tommy, Martin and Wamunyima Nchindo, and their cousin Sinvula Muyeme, were shot and killed along the Chobe river by the Botswana Defence Force (BDF) on 5 November.

The Nchindo men’s mother collapsed shortly after hearing of the shooting, and was laid to rest with her sons last weekend.

The PDM also called on President Hage Geingob to lobby the government of Botswana to immediately cease its policy.

‘Dangerous’ policy

In a statement released on Monday, PDM secretary-general Manuel Ngaringombe said the policy is dangerous and will inevitably erode the peace in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, and the good relations between Namibia and Botswana.

He added that the aggression of the BDF along Botswana’s borders has taken far too many lives and must be condemned unequivocally and without reservation.

“The status cannot be allowed to continue any longer. Botswana’s policy of ‘shoot to kill’ presents a serious threat of destabilising peace and stability in the SADC region. While we do understand that poaching poses a serious threat to both the economy and social livelihood of a country, anti-poaching methods must equally not be done in a reckless manner that may have unintended consequences,” he said.

Respect animal, human life

Ngaringombe added that all anti-poaching methods must be developed and carried out in a manner in which wildlife and human life are equally respected, especially when it involves complex cross-border issues such as the one at hand.

“The PDM will continue to render any and all assistance to the Nchindo family. This is the most unfortunate of tragedies. While the five members of the Nchindo family have now left us forever, we remain committed in ensuring that a similar tragedy never occurs again,” he said.

Meanwhile, villagers awaiting the remains of the deceased men attacked truckers from Botswana at the border last Saturday.

Some of the drivers had to be rushed to nearby health centres to be treated for injuries.

Police chief Sebastian Ndeitunga has condemned the incident as regrettable.

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