Thursday, June 30, 2011

No arrests over Namibian white rhino murder

WINDHOEK – The carcass of a white rhino whose horns were removed was found by conservationists at a lodge near Waterberg Plateau in the Otjozondjupa Region more than a week ago.

According to the Chief Inspector of the Namibian Police Protected Unit, Jackson Kamwangha, the carcass was found at the privately owned Wabi Game Lodge in the Waterberg area.

The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Environment and Tourism (MET), Dr Kalumbi Shangula, confirmed the incident noting that the horns were missing from the carcass at the time of discovery.

“We however do not know whether it was poaching or if the rhino died of natural causes,” he said.

Shangula said the rhino could have died of natural causes and whoever removed the horns could have done so when he/she saw the carcass.

This could however only become clear after investigations are completed, he added.

If indeed this was a case of poaching, then the country has to be concerned, as this might be the start of rhino poaching spreading from neighbouring South Africa, where almost one rhino a day is killed by poachers.

Nobody has yet been arrested in connection with the incident, Kamwanga confirmed.

The only rhino-killing incident in recent times was reported last year, when a rhino was found with a bullet wound in northern Kunene.

Source: New Era (Nam)

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