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By: Justicia Shipena

The spokesperson of the environment ministry Romeo Muyunda says there is a steady decline in wildlife crimes during this festive season.
Muyunda told The Villager on Tuesday upon the release of the weekly wildlife crime outcome report dated 13 to 19 December complied by the intelligence and investigation unit, environment ministry, Namibian police and safety and security ministry.

According to him, Namibia reduced wildlife crimes throughout the year but has also seen many arrests being made, most of which are arrested even before they commit the crime.
“This festive season, we are also seeing a decline of wildlife crimes, and I think this can be attributed to the fact that our anti-poaching units have been intensified countrywide,” he said.

Muyunda stated that this year they had an excellent corporation between law enforcement agencies and the ministry together with the numbers of the public.
“Moving forward, we want to see the intensified collaborations between relevant stakeholders so that we can bring issues of wildlife crimes to zero,” said Muyunda.
This year, Namibia has recorded at least 31 cases of rhino poaching.
“A significant number of these cases are in the Etosha national park, disturbing for the ministry. As relevant authorises we will have to look into how we intensify our patrols and how we are going to act against these illicit activities,”
He further added that they have observed poaching increasing in private properties.
“We will need to see how we collaborate with private owners who have rhinos in their properties, to see how we can intensify the security there,” he said.
In the new year, the ministry says it wants to see the same effort from law enforcement in the fight against wildlife crimes.
“And improve, so that we continue to reduce the numbers of poaching and ensure that those committing these crimes are arrested and brought before the law,” he said.
Looking at the new statistics recording seven cases with 15 suspects, he says the suspects either work in a group or individually.
“The case registered in Outjo, you will find that four suspects were arrested for contravening the nature conversation ordinance. In this case, these people hunted mountain zebras. In the same vein, in a case in Rundu, an individual was arrested for committing a wildlife crime. So, it is a dynamic of conspiracy and crimes that involves individuals and groups.”
The wild crime report recorded seven new cases and arrested 15 new suspects this month.
Of those 15 suspects arrested, four suspects were arrested for rhino poaching and two suspects for elephant poaching.
In the same period, 18 wildlife products were found; this includes three elephant tusks, one elephant bone, one duiker carcass, four mountain zebra carcasses, five oryx carcasses, one pangolin carcass and three pangolin skins.
The ministry also seized four firearms, 66 ammunitions, and one vehicle in this vein.
The cases were reported in the areas of Outjo, Okahandja, Oshivelo, Rundu, Oshikango, Nkurenkuru and Windhoek.





Justicia Shipena

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